Klusener show ensures World XI win
ICL World XI 167 for 6 (Klusener 63*, Boje 34, Rafique 3-20) beat ICL Bangladesh XI 155 for 9 (Nafees 32, Klusener 3-18, Harris 2-17) by 12 runs
Lance Klusener's all-round effort helped World XI to two points against Bangladesh XI in the opening match of the ICL World Series. His 63 from 49 balls ensured the team reached a competitive 167. Klusener decimated the Bangladesh XI attack hitting four boundaries and two sixes. In an equally impressive display with the ball, he crippled the opposition during their chase, accounting for Alok Kapali, Habibul Bashar and Mahbubul Karim in quick succession.
Bashar may have been a touch nervous over his decision to invite World XI to bat as Murray Goodwin launched into Mohammad Sharif in the opening over, dispatching him for four consecutive fours. But Tapash Baisya struck in the next as Ian Harvey holed out to Kapali at backward point. An early introduction of spin in just the third over paid off immediately as Mohammad Rafique castled Damien Martyn.
Goodwin, however, continued undeterred, hitting Baisya for two fours in the fourth over, but was dismissed soon afterwards by Rafique. In stepped Lance Klusener and together with fellow South African Nicky Boje rebuild the innings. Boje played the aggressor as they put on a quick 55-run partnership, never letting the run-rate drop below eight an over.
Even as Boje fell, and Paul Nixon followed soon after, Klusener held fort, bringing up his half-century with a four off Baisya. Mohammad Rafique was the most successful bowler for Bangladesh XI, picking up 3 for 20.
Nazimuddin ensured a blistering start during the chase, lofting Jason Gillispie for two huge sixes in the third over but top-edged Andre Adams into the waiting hands of Harvey. Shariar Nafees and Aftab Ahmed looked to get Bangladesh XI back on track. Aftab was looking good as he dispatched Gillespie twice to the boundary. However, he was playing dangerously: he was dropped twice in a Nantie Hayward over, and should have been stumped chance off Boje.
But wicketkeeper Nixon made amends in Boje's next over, grabbing a thin inside-edge from Aftab. Klusener then turned on the heat, first removing the ever-dangerous Kapali in his first over, and then dismissing Bashar and Karim off successive balls in his next.
A double-strike by Harris the next over - Nafees played on to his stumps and Gillespie caught Dhiman Ghosh at long-on - meant Bangladesh XI were reduced to 90 for 7. A bizarre collapse, considering they were 72 for 1 at one stage. Feeble attempts at a recovery by Rafique and Mosharraf Hossain were of no avail as Bangladesh XI ended 12 runs short.