When the series began, Bangladesh were considered slight favourites, based on their impressive performances in two Tests against Sri Lanka. Zimbabwe, though, turned in an utterly dominant display over four days in Harare. Here are the stats highlights from the Test:
- The 335-run margin is Zimbabwe's biggest Test win in terms of runs. They've won ten Tests so far, of which six have been against Bangladesh, and two each against India and Pakistan. Against Bangladesh they have a dominant 6-1 record, and have won five of six Tests at home, including all four in Harare. Given that Harare is also the venue for the second Test, this doesn't bode well for the visitors.
- Bangladesh's margin of defeat is their second-largest, in terms of runs, in Tests - against Sri Lanka in Chittagong, they'd lost by 465. This is their third defeat by 300-plus runs: they'd also lost to England by 329 runs at the same venue in 2003.
- Bangladesh's performance was particularly disappointing because they didn't even put up a semblance of fight, against an opposition they were fancied to beat. None of their batsmen managed even a half-century - the highest was Jahurul Islam's 43 in the first innings, followed by Mohammad Ashraful's 40 and 38. The last time they didn't notch up a single 50-plus score in a Test was in Bloemfontein in 2008, when they were bundled out for 153 and 159 by South Africa, and lost by an innings and 129 runs. In 21 Tests since that game and before this one in Harare, they had at least one score of more than 50.
- In the first innings, Bangladesh's last eight batsmen, from No. 4 to No. 11, totalled 18 runs among them, the lowest in Bangladesh's Test history.
- In the two Tests in Sri Lanka before this tour, Bangladesh's batsmen had played more than 180 overs in each match. This time, they lost 20 wickets in 103.3 overs, which works out to an average of a wicket every 31 deliveries. Zimbabwe, on the other hand, lost 17 wickets in 216.3 overs, an average of a wicket every 76 balls. In their first innings, Bangladesh lasted 325 balls, only one more than the number of balls Brendan Taylor played for his 171, while in the second innings Bangladesh didn't even last that long, getting bundled out in 49.2 overs. In the entire match Bangladesh scored 281 runs, Taylor alone had a match aggregate of 273.
- The only player who emerged from the thrashing with his reputation enhanced was Robiul Islam, the right-arm seamer. Robiul took six wickets in Zimbabwe's second innings and finished with a match haul of nine, becoming only the second seamer from Bangladesh, after Shahadat Hossain, to take nine in a match.
- While Bangladesh had little to cheer, apart from Robiul's lion-hearted display, Zimbabwe had many heroes. Their bowlers were all among wickets, but the batting star was their captain, Brendan Taylor, with innings of 171 and 102 not out. It was only the 14th instance of a captain scoring hundreds in each innings of a Test, while Taylor became the 12th captain to achieve this feat. (Ricky Ponting did it three times.) Taylor's match aggregate of 273 is the third-best by a Zimbabwean - only Andy Flower has scored more runs for them in a Test.
- In his last seven Tests, since 2011, Taylor has averaged 59.50, with four hundreds in 14 innings. In ten Tests before that, he had averaged 21.10, with a highest of 78 in 20 innings.