Tushar sees Bangladesh home
Bangladesh A 208 for 6 (Tushar Imran 96*) beat Zimbabwe A 204 (Mawoyo 61, Masakadza 60, Saqibul Hasan 4-30) by four wickets runs
Tushar Imran scored a defiant 96 not out to guide Bangladesh to a four-wicket win in the second one-day match played at Queens Sports Club to take a 2-0 lead in the five-match series.
Imran batted for 211 minutes, faced 125 balls and stroked nine fours as the visitors scored 208 to win the match with four overs to spare. This was after Zimbabwe A had posted 204 in 41.1 overs having won the toss and elected to bat with half centuries from opener Tinotenda Mawoyo and Hamilton Masakadza.
Zimbabwe A made two changes to the side that lost the first match at the same venue by 26 runs on Thursday, taking out their two opening bowlers Christopher Mpofu and Trevor Garwe, bringing in offspinner turned pace bowler Bradley Staddon and legspinner Ryan Higgins. For the visitors, seamer Hasibul Hossain made way for left-arm spinner Enamul Haque(jnr)
Chibhabha and Mawoyo, opening for Zimbabwe A put on 37 for the first wicket before Chibhabha fell to Farhad Reza, caught at mid off by Saqibul Hassan for 9. Mawoyo was joined by Masakadza and the two shared in a second-wicket stand of 84 which was he broken when Mawoyo was deceived by the flight of Hassan for 61 off 63 balls.
Masakadza reached his half century after facing 43 deliveries and struck a further two fours to move to 60 runs before he was bowled by Reza with a beauty of a yorker that uprooted the batsman's off stump. The only other meaningful contribution came from Friday Kasteni who scored 26 runs.
Bangladesh did not get off to such a fine start with their partnership only yielding 14 runs. Nazmus Sadat, failed to reproduce the form that he found in the first match after Sean Williams produced some brilliant fielding to run him out with a direct hit from backward point.
Imran stood tall and built his innings and even though the visitors lost a further three wickets, he was there to score the winning runs, clipping a four through the leg side to guide them to victory.
Many will question the wisdom of the selectors in dropping Mpofu and Garwe, the two most experienced bowlers in the team which, meant that Manyumwa and Staddon, who is surprisingly now bowling pace after spending most of his career as an offspinner. Some of his former team-mates at Christian Brothers College and Bulawayo Athletic Club watching in the stands were surprised to a see him taking the new ball.
Staddon is the son of Zimbabwe Cricket interim board member Stanley Staddon and the father's influence is the subject of intense speculation be doubted as his son is based in South Africa and does not play in a professional league in that country.
Mpofu and Garwe struggled in the first match but dropping both of them after just one match was a recipe for a loss and the selectors should do the most sensible thing and bring at least one of them back into the starting line-up on Sunday.
The two teams meet in the third match at the same venue before the series moves to Kwekwe where the last two matches are set for Kwekwe Sports Club.