Zimbabwe's captain Elton Chigumbura has conceded that his batsmen "did not turn up" to chase Bangladesh's 273 for 9 in the first ODI in Mirpur. The early promise, when the home side were reduced to 123 for 4 in the 28th over, got away from Zimbabwe and ended up as a false dawn as they lost by a record margin of 145 runs.
Bangladesh took 28 runs from the last two overs despite losing their way in the 46th and 47th overs when they lost three wickets for just one run. This was after Mushfiqur Rahim and Sabbir Rahman had restored the momentum of the innings with a 119-run fifth wicket stand.
"I thought we were in control when we were fielding," Chigumbura said. "Maybe we gave them too many in the last couple of overs after the way we brought it back following Mushfiqur's dismissal. I thought it was still a chaseable score despite the last two overs. I think we gave them 15-20 runs more than we wanted. Obviously those things can happen especially towards the end of the innings.
"They bowled well, but we didn't execute well. I thought the way we got out, we didn't try to build an innings. Some of them tried to force the issue. I think that's what made it worse."
A blow to their batting approach was the injury to wicketkeeper Richmond Mutumbami, who hurt his ankle. It is unclear whether he can play in the rest of the series but since he is a regular opener these days, the Zimbabwe team management had to make a quick change. They sent Luke Jongwe up the order, in his first attempt as an opening batsman. Jongwe made 39 off 51 balls but Chamu Chibhabha did not provide a similar push from the other end and the start was ruined quickly.
Chigumbura said that Jongwe's promotion was a positive move and felt he did a decent enough job as a first-timer. He said that the fault was with the regular batsmen who did not make enough contributions to the chase.
"I thought the way Luke [Jongwe] played was good to watch considering it was his first time opening. He was told in the last minute to go and open. It didn't affect our batting line-up besides Jongwe going up the order. It didn't make us lose this game. Our batters didn't turn up today."
Chigumbura said that Shakib Al Hasan, who took five wickets, used his experience to bowl on a wicket that hardly offered any turn. He said that in some cases, his batsmen gave away their wickets. Shakib had Chibhabha caught off a skier while Craig Ervine also tried to loft him but was only successful to reach mid-off. Sean Williams exposed his stumps too far to be bowled and Shakib had Graeme Cremer and Tinashe Panyangara dismissed with regulation arm-balls.
"We played a bit loose and if I am being critical towards our batters, I would say we gave him wickets. Shakib is an experienced guy so he used the wicket well. I am sure our boys are better than the way they played today," Chigumbura said.