Bangladesh v Pakistan, 2nd ODI, Mirpur December 3, 2011

Pakistan too powerful for Nasir Hossain's fight


Pakistan 262 for 7 (Akmal 59, Afridi 42, Shakib 1-27) beat Bangladesh 186 for 6 (Nasir 100, Gul 4-36 Hafeez 2-15) by 76 runs
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

For the second time in two matches, Bangladesh's top-order batsmen collapsed quickly, this time playing rash shots on an easier pitch, and Pakistan secured the three-match series 2-0 without being stretched in Mirpur. The home side's approach to their innings was in contrast to that of Pakistan, who had batted with deliberate caution to guard against early wickets and build a platform for a strong total. The difference in how the teams fared in the first ten overs of their innings decided the match.

Bangladesh's batsmen did not even begin to challenge Pakistan, crumbling against Mohammad Hafeez and Umar Gul, whose economical yet incisive spells with the new ball made the target of 263 disappear from sight. The collapse began in the fourth over and went on until the tenth, at the end of which Bangladesh were 19 for 4. Tamim Iqbal slashed at a potential wide and toe-ended it to slip; Imrul Kayes chipped a drive softly to cover; Shahriar Nafees might have inside-edged on to his pad but he had just survived a closer lbw shout; and Mushfiqur Rahim pushed away from his body and was caught at gully. In between these dismissals the batsmen couldn't get the ball off the square and the asking-rate spiraled irreversibly out of control. Hafeez eventually finished with figures of 10-2-15-2.

Pakistan, on the other hand, used an old-school approach. They were content to play within themselves and build slowly. Pakistan weren't entirely successful, because Bangladesh broke steady partnerships before they caused too much damage, but the power-hitters, Umar Akmal and Shahid Afridi, fired from the platform built for them to reach a sizeable total.

Hafeez and Younis Khan laid the foundations with a partnership of 57 for the second wicket. They blocked the good deliveries when they had to, and shouldered arms when they could. Shafiul Islam and Rubel Hossain conceded only 28 in the first nine overs before Mushfiqur turned to the left-arm spin of Shakib Al Hasan, who continued to tighten Bangladesh's grip on the run-rate. Hafeez and Younis eventually fell in succession and, at 93 for 3 in the 26th over, Bangladesh had inched ahead.

Then began Pakistan's strongest partnership, between the two most different batsmen in the XI: Misbah-ul-Haq and Umar Akmal. Misbah ensured solidity, while Akmal infused the innings with urgency with his running between the wickets and his repertoire of attacking shots. Though Misbah had begun batting earlier, Akmal was soon double his captain's score in virtually the same number of deliveries.

The fifty partnership for the fourth wicket came off 54 balls and Akmal brought up his half-century off 49. Shakib had been Bangladesh's best bowler and his only wicket broke the threatening partnership: Akmal skied the ball inside out to long-off to be caught for 59. Misbah fell soon after, becoming the debutant Elias Sunny's maiden ODI wicket. At 193 for 5 in the 42nd over, Bangladesh had restored parity.

Shahid Afridi hit his second ball for six, over long-off, and was then dropped on 8 by the bowler Shafiul. He went on to hurt Bangladesh, hitting the ball powerfully and charging between the wickets to score 42 runs off 27 balls. That Bangladesh had to chase more than 250 was their own fault, for they conceded 22 runs in extras, 17 of them through wides.

Bangladesh were not without a hero, though, for Nasir Hossain entertained the strong crowd by scoring his maiden ODI century. Unfortunately for Hossain, he began his innings after the game was lost, and he did not have partners who batted with similar purpose. Even Shakib, who is usually hard to subdue if he bats long, managed only 34 off 90 balls. That partnership of 106 for the fifth wicket took 32.1 overs and caused the asking-rate to skyrocket.

Hossain could have been out on 9 had the wicketkeeper Sarfraz Ahmed held an easy catch, and as Pakistan eased their intensity because they were never going to lose, he began to play his shots, taking on a formidable spin attack. Hossain began the 49th over on 86 off 127 balls and reached his century in the next four deliveries. He slammed Afridi over the extra-cover boundary for six, and cut through point, before playing a dot ball. On 96, he charged and swung, getting an edge that beat Sarfraz and went to the boundary. The crowd and his team-mates applauded him warmly, for he had been an example to his more experienced team-mates.

George Binoy is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Dummy4 on December 6, 2011, 8:51 GMT

    Pakistan are doing well at the moment they never given the single opprtunity to their rivals to dictate terms Even though it might came against Zim,BD and Sl(who are on transition).Their ultimate Challenge will come against Australia,South Africa,India and England.The Traditional problem with Pakistan team has been their mindset when they are winning its seems to be okay but when they are losing every things fell apart and loosibg series becames episodes of Controversy,Fixing allegation,Board Player dispute ,Disciplinnary action etc etc.

  • Dummy4 on December 5, 2011, 12:24 GMT

    well done team green we love you boom boom always rockssssssss

  • khurram on December 5, 2011, 12:21 GMT

    Kamran Akmal is not an opening batsman. Imran Farhat should be replaced with Imran nazir. Afaq Raheem is the leading runs scorer in the recent Quaid e Azam trophy. Ahmed shahzad is also another option for the opener. There are certain options for the opening batsman, so selectors should think about these options. Specially Mr. Illyas should look this matter because he is the chief selector.

  • khurram on December 5, 2011, 12:13 GMT

    Imran Nazeer should be given chance. He is an attacking batsman. Instead of Imran Farhat, he sould be given a chance. He has ability to destroy every kind of bowling attack.

  • Dummy4 on December 5, 2011, 11:30 GMT

    try kamran akmal as a specialist batsmen, he is good as a opener,he has 3 centuries while opening else try imran nazair instead of farhat

  • Dummy4 on December 5, 2011, 9:22 GMT

    BD team is now paying for removing it x coach Mr. Jemie Sedions and x captain Sakib al Hasan. Top order batsman performed much batter during Sedions period. There should have been changed of dirty political minded Directors from BCB rather than removing it coach and captain. I don't know how long we are going to see the pathetic batting display & performance from BD team as we support this team blindly.

  • khurram on December 5, 2011, 7:53 GMT

    There is possibility of inclusion of new players in the third ODI against Bangladesh. Hope they perform well. Best of luck for the third match. As far as Sadaf is concerned, he is young and he will get a chance in near future. Now its time to the new guys to perform well in the third match if they are given a chance.

  • Dummy4 on December 5, 2011, 4:54 GMT

    @ ahsan shere u r right he holds the innings together with misbah if wickets r falling 4m other en misbah & younis make a good steady partnership and hold the innings made work easy 4 players like umar akmal,shahid afridi

  • Mradul on December 5, 2011, 3:57 GMT

    Was the pitch a minefield? How come they played all 50 overs and scored only 187? I am sorry but i thought at no time this guy Naseer, though he scored a century, tried to Win the game for his team. He could be a good asset for Test team but was no good in the ODI. I am sure those days are gone when a 50 off 93 balls was considered good in an ODI.

  • uzma on December 5, 2011, 1:00 GMT

    i hope wahab riaz will play v eng coz cant wait wahab to bowl to trott. it will sure be a cracker of a series cant waittttttttttttttttttttttttttttttttttttttttttttttttttttttttttttttttttttttt.

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