Bangladesh v Nepal, WT20, First Round, Group A, Chittagong March 18, 2014

Bangladesh win emphatically in heavy dew


Bangladesh 132 for 2 (Anamul 42) beat Nepal 126 for 5 (Khadka 41, Al-Amin 2-17) by eight wickets
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

Pressure? Not a bit of it. Bangladesh are strutting their way through Group A with an insouciant swagger, as good as sealing a place in the tournament proper with a second emphatic display. Dismissing the challenge of Associate sides can be a damned-if-you-don't, damned-if-you-do-it-well sort of scenario but, given the team's recent form, it had been by no means guaranteed that Bangladesh would make it through the first round without any scares.

They are not through yet but with a regal-looking net run rate of 2.686 and the weakest team in the group left to play, Dhaka can begin to prepare for bumper fixtures against India and Pakistan, not to mention, West Indies, the defending champions, and Australia. Bigger exploits may still be to come.

Faced with a modest target after Nepal had gamely scrapped through their innings, losing only five wickets but always struggling to score much above six an over, Bangladesh repeated the dose they had administered to Afghanistan. Paras Khadka, Nepal's resourceful captain, scored 41 for the second match running and continued to open the bowling with his stately offspinners but this time his side were overwhelmed.

They were not totally outclassed in this match, their first encounter with a Full Member. They were, however, outgunned, in much the same way their supporters, among the most fervent around, on this occasion had to accept being outnumbered.

Al-Amin Hossain claimed 2 for 17, conceding only a couple of singles off the final over to quell any thought of a more testing total and Bangladesh's openers again attacked aggressively from the outset. Anamul Haque hit his second and third balls for six and four as 13 runs came off Sompal Kami's opening over, while Tamim Iqbal's every contribution was lapped up on his home ground.

A sumptuous strike over long-on was greeted by the word "Tamim-ator" flashing up on the big screen. When he fell after putting on 63 runs with Anamul in 7.5 overs - only the third time Bangladesh's openers had passed 50 together in T20s and their highest stand - it was almost certain Nepal would not be coming back.

Both wickets to fall were born of Bangladesh's haste to get the job done, Tamim caught giving Basant Regmi the charge and Anamul run out after a miscommunication with Sabbir Rahman, again failing to build on a promising start. The end came quickly, after Shakti Gauchan had failed with a courageous one-handed attempt to catch Rahman. Gauchan, bowling the next over, conceded 21, three times hit beyond the boundary boards, and Shakib Al Hasan sealed victory with his fourth towering six and 27 balls remaining.

As in the first match in Mirpur, Mushfiqur chose to bowl. As in the first match, a capacity crowd roared its approval at every run, wicket and catch for their luridly clad heroes. Bangladesh's kit has made quite an impression at this tournament; thankfully the team's impact has been even more noteworthy.

A seam attack of Mashrafe Mortaza and Al-Amin may not be express by absolute standards but they seemed to discomfit Nepal's openers, who were far more subdued in their second outing. There was just enough pace and movement, through the air and off the seam, to have Subash Khakurel and Sagar Pun poking uncertainly outside off, forced on to the back foot.

Mushfiqur's first bowling change brought immediate reward and he continued to deftly rotate his attack, 12 times in total. Khakurel got away with a toe-ended loft back over the new bowler, Farhad Reza, but then fell trying to take on a back of a length ball, sending it high and steepling straight to mid-off.

Shakib's first over was not so successful, as Gyanendra Malla, who struck 48 in Nepal's victory over Hong Kong, smoked him over cover to suggest that this would not be such a facile challenge for Bangladesh's spinners, after they had bamboozled Afghanistan two days ago. Shakib was later denied the wicket of Sharad Vesawkar when Mushfiqur failed to collect the ball low to his left with the batsman yards out of his ground.

Despite looking a somewhat ill at ease, at 38 for 1 after the Powerplay, Nepal were actually a couple of runs and a wicket better off than against Hong Kong. Al-Amin, switching ends, evened the gap between perception and reality with two wickets in three balls. When Pun drove on the up to be caught at cover, fireworks whistled into the night sky; moments later Malla was struck on the knee by one that darted back in. The pyrotechnics crew had not been given time to reload and they were made to wait a significant period before another salvo was required, as Khadka combined with Vesawkar in a fourth-wicket stand worth 85.

Khadka's second ball was a gorgeously timed drive through extra cover that seemed to telescope away from the sweeping fielder as he gave futile chase. In Greek mythology, it was Paris of Troy who felled the seemingly invincible Achilles with a well-aimed arrow. Paras of Nepal had a little more trouble in locating Bangladesh's weak spot but he mixed good running with deft strokeplay (and the occasional heave), again laying the foundations of Nepal's total.

As the season turns in Bangladesh, hotter temperatures meant repeated attempts to keep the grass free of dew, as hessian cloths were dragged across the outfield. But the first group stage has so far been no sweat for the hosts.

Alan Gardner is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. He tweets here

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Android on March 23, 2014, 5:22 GMT

    @rOketman - here you go again taking things back 60 years ago. Things have changed drastically from the 1950's to the 21st century. Back then there were no ODI'S, no T20's, no coaching staff, no physical trainers, no technology and we didn't have the huge infrastructure we have available in practically every country. Besides during the first 15 or so years India was battling the internal turmoil in the country for it's own independence. So dude you seriously cannot compare the 1950's to now. Despite having all the technology and coaching staffs and grass root infrastructure in Bangladesh how many test matches have you won??? only 4 out of 83. And two of those were against club level West Indies.

  • Shafin on March 22, 2014, 0:18 GMT

    BD will do much better with the right coaching staff in place. Hopefully BCB will take immediate action and find experienced and smart coaching staff and selectors in place for the national and all age level teams. Poor coaching and captaincy has been the reason for several recent loss BD had incurred.

  • Arzun on March 21, 2014, 0:58 GMT

    Nepal well played with BD despite of their first encounter to any test playing nation. I am glad that BD fans also supported Nepal in our match with other teams, I would prefer to support BD in super 10.

  • Android on March 20, 2014, 8:16 GMT

    It is so disappointing to see the kind of respect shown to each other by some of the fans. And I've no doubt at all that there are few ppl here who comment while having certain agenda in mind. if Bangladesh is celebrating after winning from Nepal just let it be. its a world cup qualifier.even though I see no win for them in the group of death but still. Give respect where due. A neutral perspective from a die hard cricket fan.

  • roket on March 20, 2014, 4:10 GMT

    @vkias:If we take 5 more years to register a win against Eng, that will still be ahead of India. India took 20 years to register their first win. But you must dig deeper into that India win, to find out that win after 20 years in 1952 was not really against the England national team, it was against a club team. You want proof? Look up the scorecard from the first match of that series, and your will see England had more than 5 uncapped players on the playing 11, some of them were never selected again to play for england after that embarrassing loss. India was not even a halfway decent team that SA, WI, Australia or England took seriously till late 60s, early 70s, 40 years after becoming a test playing nation, almost 50 years after becoming a full ICC member. We are far ahead of where India was in the first 14 years of their history.

  • Shah on March 20, 2014, 3:27 GMT

    There are few nations like especially IND on top & No.1 as usual, No.2 SL & No.3, No.4 coming soon, anyway these funny arrogant fans makes a fair cricketing thoughts so ugly & even shows much jealousy on almost all BD's success in cricket with just hardly any appreciation from one or two decent person because this is their nature as you can see they really don't want BD to be superior than them ever & get thrashed over & over being their neighborhood country as BD is really improving that's why will always try to take BD's credit away & make it bitter no matter how good they play in such match with authority...! & this two teams call themselves the best as if BD can't beat them where BD already defeated them not even once but more lol...

  • Amila on March 19, 2014, 17:41 GMT

    @ Ammo666 ; Your words work against your favorite BD team. "from 68/8 match SL won it was not for SL's talent or class but due to BD's suicidal taking it as easy!"

    Isn't that mean BD are not up to the standards. They take control of the game for some time. But unable to keep it. That's a characteristic of a weak team.

  • Amir on March 19, 2014, 13:30 GMT

    In a post about BD-NP match, there are people from other nations showing up making unnecessary comments changing the whole tone of the conversation. Most of earlier posts were BD and NP fans talking positively about each there's team and then came the haters spoiling the friendly chatter. My fellow BD fans, no need to respond to rubbish. We understand not all fans are like this but some are and lets not let them take us to their low trashy level. Enjoy the victory and support our team in a positive manner. Go Tigers!

  • nathaniel on March 19, 2014, 13:05 GMT

    If the spinners shakib and razzak bowled then why did mushy use nasir for 3 overs but Mahmudullah Riad none ? I never liked mushfique captaincy which probably would cost us games in the next round. Anyway, I dont like the term 'thrash' becuz Nepal fought well . Afghanistan were poor against Bd and I can accept Bd thrashed afghan but Nepal was impressive. Nepal fans dont bother the title becuz your team played well and won lot of Bangladeshi hearts. We Bd fans will always support Nepal and I urge BCB to include napalee players in BPL so that they improve and BOHISHKAR all these ill-mannered afghan players from BPL.

  • sohel on March 19, 2014, 10:50 GMT

    Mahnoor Siddiqui@ Thank you for your concern and hey don't worry about Bangladesh, I would love to suggest you to concentrate how to bring international cricket in your country!

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