Zimbabwe v Bangladesh, T20 tri-series, Harare June 21, 2012

Bangladesh chase 150 with ease


Bangladesh 153 for 4 (Nasir 41*) beat Zimbabwe 149 for 8 (Masakadza 56, Mortaza 2-28) by six wickets

Bangladesh kept themselves in the running for a spot in the final of the Zimbabwe tri-series, just, with a six-wicket win over Zimbabwe at Harare Sports Club. Nasir Hossain held Bangladesh's pursuit of 150 together, responding to Hamilton Masakadza's half-century with an unbeaten 41 to guide his side home with 15 balls to spare. The real credit for the win must go to Bangladesh's bowlers, however, as they scuppered Zimbabwe's charge at the death of their innings to keep the target within reach.

An aggressive start from Zimbabwe's batsmen had put the home side in a position to reach at least 160 after Brendan Taylor won his third toss in a row and, once again, decided to bat first. Zimbabwe were well-placed at 125 for 3 at the end of the 16th over, with two set batsmen at the crease before Bangladesh clawed their way back into the game.

Left-arm spinner Elias Sunny provided the breakthrough by having Stuart Matsikenyeri caught at long on for an industrious 27, and from that point onwards wickets fell regularly. The complexion of the match changed completely as Mashrafe Mortaza returned to have Masakadza caught behind, heaving at a slower ball, for 56. In the same over Elton Chigumbura's run out reduced Zimbabwe to 132 for 6 before Prosper Utseya was undone by an Abul Hasan slower ball and Graeme Cremer sliced an attempted slog to be caught in the deep off Mortaza, who was named Man of the Match for his efforts.

Zimbabwe's stumble, during which they lost five wickets for just 31 runs in the last five overs of their innings, gave Bangladesh a gettable target at which to aim and their openers, Tamim Iqbal and Mohammad Ashraful, launched the chase with gusto. Taylor opened the bowling with Prosper Utseya, the offspinner promptly being despatched for two crisp boundaries in his first five balls. Chris Mpofu's first over went for 15, and Bangladesh were flying at 25 without loss.

Bangladesh then suffered a stutter, courtesy some needlessly reckless batting from Ashraful, who was bowled attempting a paddle, and some equally casual running from Tamim. Graeme Cremer had Anamul Haque caught behind in his first over to reduce Bangladesh to a wobbly 52 for 3 in the seventh over, but Nasir Hossain then joined captain Mushfiqur Rahim in the middle and the pair set about repairing the innings.

Theirs was a watchful partnership, and apart from Mushfiqur's solitary six, their entire stand of 47 was made up of scampered ones and twos. Zimbabwe's hopes will have been briefly raised when a superb pick-up and throw from Vusi Sibanda had Mushfiqur run out for 31, but Hossain and Mahmudullah closed out the match in a flurry of boundaries. They put on an unbeaten 54 at almost 13-runs an over to keep Bangladesh's hopes alive in this series.

Earlier, Masakadza had once again provided the backbone of Zimbabwe's innings and his extraordinary run of form has now extended to a century and three fifties in his last four innings. After Masakadza lost his opening partner, Vusi Sibanda, to a run out, a partnership of 48 in 32 deliveries with his captain Taylor helped Zimbabwe to weather the early breakthrough and briefly keep the ascendancy. Taylor contributed watchful 38s in Zimbabwe's previous two wins, holding the middle order together, but with his side seemingly assured of a place in Sunday's final he chose to take the attack to the bowlers.

Taylor raced to 27 from just 12 balls but then played one shot too many, a top-edged hoick ending up in Mahmudullah's hands at deep midwicket. Taylor's dismissal meant that Zimbabwe's middle order, which hasn't really been tested yet in this series, were offered the chance for some time in the middle. Craig Ervine couldn't make anything of the opportunity, however, as his dreadful run with the bat continued when he played outside the line of a Mahmudullah straight-break to depart for a golden duck.

While Masakadza remained Zimbabwe still looked like passing 160, and he was cheered to a 47-ball fifty in the 15th over. The crowds attending the matches at Harare Sports Club have swelled as Zimbabwe racked up consecutive wins, and a particularly noisy rabble around Castle Corner kept warm on a wintry afternoon with choruses of exuberant and vocal support. Once Masakadza was prised out by Mortaza, however, they had much less cause to celebrate.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Hira on June 22, 2012, 13:21 GMT

    @ FOTO on (June 22 2012, 02:04 AM GMT)- yes and the sky will turn green tomorrow.

  • Ken on June 22, 2012, 8:36 GMT

    good to see a decent group of players in bng team now, such as tamim, mushy, nasir, riyad, razzak and mash. with players like rubel, shafiul and shakib to come, things looking good. agree with the people saying junaid and nazmul should come in for anamul and abul hasan today though. but those two should be given more chances to impress in the future.

  • Amit on June 22, 2012, 6:27 GMT

    I see some BD supporters are claiming that India Got test Status earlier thn BD & BD is doing better than india in that context. I say was BD not existing at all since 1947....or earlier than that. I say getting test status after india itself is a failure as BD PPL was also playing cricket the same time ind start playing cricket..this seems more logical

  • Amit on June 22, 2012, 6:23 GMT

    I see some BD supporters are claiming that India Got test Status very early thn BD & BD is doing better than india in that context. I say was BD not existing at all since 1947....or earlier than that. I say getting test status after india itseld is a failure as BD was also playing cricket before /after getting their independence.

  • Tanvirul hoque on June 22, 2012, 5:50 GMT

    @FrenchCricketFan-- yeah!AFTAB was the best batsman in t20 BD has ever produced((though Tamim will soon take that place))..just check Aftab's stat..in fact,he is still the maximum 6 hitter for BD..he lost his ways when he joined the rebel ICL...he played in BPL for Dhaka Gladiators but failed to put some good performance..

  • Mradul on June 22, 2012, 5:42 GMT

    @FOTO: If you think BD who have played 70 odd tests in last 12 years and won 3 (1 against Zim and other 2 against hugely depleted WI) and done better than any other country then you are surely dreaming. Their Win-loss ratio in tests is worst for any country after 73 tests (0.04). India after 70 odd tests had a win loss ration of 0.20, 5 times better than BD and had already Won tests against Eng and Aus. BD has so far played 262 ODIs and has a Win loss ratio of 0.38, India after 262 ODIs had a Win loss ratio of 0.90 with a Victory in WC1983 and made to Semi finals of 1987 WC, has BD made to any QF yet in the 4 WC they played let alone Win? And as far as 4-0 thrashing goes, then my friend Eng lost 3-0 just recently to Pak and Aus lost 3-1 at home to Eng. These things happen like WI beat BD at home and Zim beat BD in their last Test and ODI series's.

  • Dummy4 on June 22, 2012, 4:17 GMT

    I want a Bangladesh vs Zimbabwe final............ though it seems far away.....

  • Dave on June 22, 2012, 3:28 GMT

    well done ban but I dont think you would win against sa with ballers like abul hassan and ziar rahman but I will be happy if you do cuz I like upset. Nasir hossain will surely become an exciting world class batsman soon - lots of potential and talent in him. Mahmudullah Riad turning out to be a good t20 allrounder - bats faster than shakib and his balling consistent. Only if you find couple of decent pacers you will be alright. By the way, what happened to your old player aftab ahmed ? That player is a natural t20 batsman. I like how zimbabwe improving in good pace. Ban improving a bit slower though but I think they will get there soon or later.

  • Bhagya on June 22, 2012, 3:26 GMT

    @FOTO::: Wake up mate....Wake up....You are dreaming....

  • roket on June 22, 2012, 3:23 GMT

    wow bruisers! Why the fake name? We all know who you are!! We will have the same reception for BD team in Dhaka that the Indian Team got when they returned home after losing to England 4-0, Australia 4-0 and the thrashing in Asia cup. After all we are neighbors, we have to keep traditions up!!:-)

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