Afghanistan v Bangladesh, World Cup 2015, Group A, Canberra February 18, 2015

Shakib, Mortaza spoil Afghanistan's debut


Bangladesh 267 (Mushfiqur 71, Shakib 63, Shapoor 2-20) beat Afghanistan 162 (Nabi 44, Mashrafe 3-20) by 105 runs
Live scorecard and ball-by-ball details

Afghanistan's World Cup debut was the story of the day in Canberra but Mashrafe Mortaza's Bangladesh won by 105 runs to assuage worries of an early meltdown at the hands of the newcomers.

Bangladesh stuttered to 267 all out and only reached that score through a 15-over blaze from Shakib Al Hasan and Mushfiqur Rahim. Then it was turn of Mashrafe to sink Afghanistan to 3-3 in the third over. Recovery took Afghanistan a long time, long enough to push the asking rate well out of reach. Afghanistan were eventually bowled out for 162 but would have taken plenty of positives from their first outing.

Those, though, would be restricted to their bowling effort. Their 268-run chase didn't go to plan. Mashrafe removed Javed Ahmadi at the end of the first over, the batsman's attempt to work the ball into the legside causing him to pop a simple return catch off the leading edge. The other opener, Afsar Zazai, fell next ball, trapped leg-before. It became 3 for 3 when Asghar Stanikzai edged Mashrafe to first slip where Mahmudullah grabbed it after a bit of a fumble.

Samiullah Shenwari, who had been removed from the bowling attack after seven balls for transgressing into the danger area twice, led the recovery with the bat. He struck the team's first boundary, a crash through the covers off Mortaza. Nawroz Mangal helped him pull the team out of trouble, adding 62 for the fourth wicket. The required rate, though, was on the rise and the pressure led to the wicket of Mangal, who holed out at deep square-leg. Rubel took the catch but hurt his leg in the tumble. Shenwari was then run out in the 26th over when Sabbir's pick-up and throw from the leg-side boundary found him some way short of the crease.

Mohammad Nabi and Najibullah Zadran added 58 runs for the sixth wicket before Najubullah fell leg-before to Shakib in the 37th over. Mashrafe then picked up his third wicket, dismissing Nabi for 44 off 43. From seven down, the Afghanistan tail struck a few blows before the innings came to an end in the 43rd over.

It was apt that the first Afghanistan player known to the wider world, Hamid Hassan, bowled his country's first delivery in the World Cup. Hassan, decked with warrior-like face-paint, and Shapoor Zadran kept the Bangladesh openers quiet for 14 overs, before Mirwais Ashraf picked up both Tamim Iqbal and Anamul Haque in the space of two overs. The opening pair batted circumspectly and did well to avoid giving away early wickets.

Tamim, though, grew restless, and went hard at Ashraf, surviving a caught-behind appeal when he appeared to edge the ball and a close run-out after a mix-up with Anamul. The latter took his own time until Ashraf trapped him leg-before with a superb inducker.

Ashraf bowled a superb first spell, and Bangladesh were under his spell until Soumya Sarkar hammered 15 off his ninth over to spoil his figures. He had given away only 17 from his first eight overs. Soumya and Mahmudullah added 50 patient runs for the third wicket before the pair fell in Shapoor's second spell.

The fourth wicket, at the start of the 30th over, brought together Mushfiqur and Shakib at a crucial stage, when more wickets could have left them vulnerable to the sort of collapse that haunted them in 2014. The team's most successful batting partnership took control almost instantly, picking up singles and doubles regularly before plundering 48 runs in the batting Powerplay. The pair moved to their respective fifties and had begun launching into the Afghanistan attack when Shakib fell in the 45th over, having made 63 off 51 balls, with six fours and a pulled six over deep square-leg. The fifth-wicket pair had added 114 runs in 15.3 overs.

Bangladesh immediately lost their way, as Sabbir Rahman struggled through his 2.1-over stay, keeping Mushfiqur at the non-striker's end. Mushfiqur struck a four as soon as he got back on strike, but fell soon after for a 56-ball 71, slogging one down deep midwicket's throat in the 48th over. Mashrafe struck three fours towards the end, but even then Bangladesh had only made 73 in their last ten overs while losing their last six wickets.

Having bowled with discipline for the first 29.1 overs of the Bangladesh innings, Afghanistan gave away too many four balls during the Shakib-Mushfiqur partnership. They seemed to tire in the field as well, conceding overthrows and letting balls go through their legs. Afghanistan also failed to use a referral in the 41st over, when Aftab Alam had an lbw appeal turned down. Replays suggested the ball was going on to hit the stumps, and had hit Mushfiqur's front pad before his bat.

Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo's Bangladesh correspondent. @isam84

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Dummy on February 22, 2015, 19:39 GMT

    Support your team full heartedly but please do not disrespect the opponents.

  • ar on February 22, 2015, 17:21 GMT

    Wake up Afghanistan...... it is Bangladesh,,, a test playing nation. This result is realistic & inevitable. Hope from now on, your arrogance attitude will be disappear towards Bangladesh team & fans.

  • Edrees on February 20, 2015, 12:08 GMT

    As an Afghan I have a huge respect for Bangladishi fans and cricketers, and Afg team is only few years old, we lack experience and consistency, however Bangladishi cricketers showed right after the game that how unprofessional they're, and they forgot that they won against an associate team, and they're still to play the big boys, and they would be still lucky if they can make to next round, NZ, Aus, Eng, and SL will destroy them.

  • John on February 20, 2015, 6:29 GMT

    this time bangla boys should perform the victory march before the game begins. that way they can show respect for their fans before going for another humiliation! these fellows are children in their minds acting like kids on the cricket pitches of the world cup stage! bangla have no idea about the game or behavior of professional sportsmen!! they have disregarded cricket and show no respect for the game or its admirers from the world! please grow up Bangla cricket! for 15 years you do nothing and all your fans creating hoopla because 1 wins against inexperience Afghani team!! bangla fans also please relax your minds and voices and enjoy the matches!!!!

  • Abu Saleh on February 20, 2015, 5:02 GMT

    Bangladeshi top orders need to rotate there strikes in order to decrease there pressure for the middle orders. In the last over, run wasn't coming easily for Bangladesh. They must have good eye contact while running, specially Tamim and Bijoy.

  • Tan on February 19, 2015, 22:26 GMT

    Good Morning fellow Bangladeshi. Let's just ignore these online haters and trolls and move on. They got nothing but hate in their heart so you can't expect anything better. In regards to the next match against Australia I fear it may be cancelled due to bad weather. This will be a misfortune to miss out the experience against tournament's best favorite and top 4 pace attacks. Last time we played against Australia was 4 years back. Aussie cricketers are very professionals and there's lot to learn from them. I really hope to see we play against the best…..

  • Dummy4 on February 19, 2015, 20:07 GMT

    Best 11 BD team to beat Australia.. 1. Tamim 2. Bijoy 3. Momin 4. Mushi 5. Sakib 6. Riyad 7. Souymma 8. Nasir/ Taijul 9. Mash 10. Taskin 11. Rubel... No. 6,7, & 8 can propel run in slog over or support if there any top order collapse... Nasir should admit in team as a capable to deliver handsome medium pace.

  • Azraf on February 19, 2015, 19:59 GMT

    I've seen Mashrafe bowling @ around 145km speed in Australia, during the first Aus tour of BD at 2003. Mashrafe was a troubling that great Australian side featuring Gilcrist ,Heyden and Ponting with his pace and line - length. Several operation on both knees suffer Mashrafe a lot and took away his pace. Tasking has about similar pace, but not exceed the pace that Mashrafe has in his earlier career. Taskin also not perfect with line and length as Mashrafe was in his earlier career. But I hope Taskin keep improving and be an asset for BD team. But Plz dont say Taskin is faster than Mashrafe, because that statement may right for now, but if you judge the whole career, I have not seen anyone come to BD team who is fastet than Mashrafe's earlier career.

    Mashrafe is the real hero of the BD team. He have to go under operation about 6 times, 3 for each (left and right) knee. I dont think anyone in the cricket history have done it and again started playing cricket world cup for the country.

  • Amila on February 19, 2015, 18:42 GMT

    @ Ammo666; Nobody expected SL to win 1996 WC. They were underdogs at that time. This year nobody expect BD to win the WC. But this can be their moment. Regarding SL's chances, maximum they will advance will be QFs. I have a feeling that BD will replace SL for a QF spot. From this group Aus, NZ, Eng and BD will advance.

  • Cricinfouser on February 19, 2015, 15:53 GMT

    @bluesbreaker... Just playing at home. C ur result 5 years ouside of India..

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