Third One-Day International

ZImbabwe v Bangladesh

John Ward

At Harare, March 10, 2004. Bangladesh won by eight runs. Toss: Zimbabwe.

Bangladesh ended almost five years of desperate longing by finally winning an international match. Zimbabwe seemed to be resting on their laurels after dominating the Tests, while their opponents were revived and played with growing self-belief. It was their first international win since the now-tainted World Cup match against Pakistan in 1999, which helped earn them the promotion to Test status they have done so little to justify. Zimbabwe were at least pleased that play was possible: to the relief of those who feared a series washout, Harare, usually wetter than Bulawayo, produced better weather and a surprisingly dry pitch. When Bangladesh were put in, Habibul Bashar played his one significant innings of the tour, digging in with his 20-year-old vice-captain, Rajin Saleh, for a century partnership after the openers fell cheaply. But Zimbabwe really lost their grip when Mohammad Ashraful, with 51 in 32 balls, and the all-rounders were allowed to hammer 89 in the last ten overs. Rogers and Carlisle began a brisk reply with a partnership of 109 - but the stroll soon became a scramble. The middle order threw away wickets and, when Streak was taken by surprise and sent a hip-high full toss skywards, Zimbabwe were doomed. The steady bowling of Mushfiqur Rahman and Mohammad Rafique was crucial.

Man of the Match: Mohammad Ashraful.

© John Wisden & Co