Sri Lankan XI v Bangladeshis, Tour match, Colombo July 18, 2007

Ahmed leads Bangladeshis to warm-up win

Cricinfo staff

Bangladeshis 242 for 7 (Ahmed 92*) beat Sri Lankan XI 241 for 5 (Paranavitana 63*, Daniel 57) by three wickets

Mushfiqur Rahim played his part in the victory with a calm 25 © AFP
Aftab Ahmed warmed up for Bangladesh's one-day series against Sri Lanka with a match-winning 92 in a three-wicket win against a Sri Lankan XI in Colombo. Ahmed led a recovery from 96 for 5 as the Bangladeshis chased down 242 with four balls remaining.

After the Test series where the top order struggled a similar pattern was forming in coloured clothes. Shahriar Nafees, who was added to the one-day squad at the last minute, was caught behind first ball then Tushar Imran and captain Mohammad Ashraful failed to reach double figures.

Tamim Iqbal held the early stages of the chase together with 45, but when he was stumped off Lasith Fernando the Bangladeshis were staring down the barrel. However, Ahmed began the fightback in a sixth-wicket stand of 81 with Mushfiqur Rahim (25) before adding 56 with Farhad Reza to bring the target within sight. Reza clubbed two sixes in a 25-ball 26 while Ahmed paced his innings perfectly as the winning runs came two balls into the final over.

As usual it was the Bangladeshi spinners who played a key role with the ball in restricting the home side. Ian Daniel (57) laid a solid platform, but Shakib-al-Hasan and Abdur Razzaq kept the run-rate down with their left-arm spin. The middle order couldn't accelerate, although Tharanga Paranavitana's unbeaten 63 lifted the total towards something competitive.