Mustafizur grabs four as Bangladesh crush Zimbabwe to avert clean sweep

Mustafizur’s 4-for and half-centuries from Anamul and Afif bring relief

Syed Mahmud
Published : 10 August 2022, 02:16 PM
Updated : 10 August 2022, 03:43 PM

Mustafiur Rahman produced wily bowling to help Bangladesh crush Zimbabwe by 105 runs to earn a consolation win and avert a humiliating whitewash in the third and final ODI in Harare.

Sent in to bat first, the Tigers rode on half-centuries from Anamul Haque (76) and Afif Hossain (85) to post 256 for nine at the Harare Sporting Club on Wednesday.

In reply, Zimbabwe collapsed to 83 for nine before Richard Ngarava (34) and Victor Nyauchi (27) put up a last stand before folding for 151.

The hosts struggled from the outset of the chase as Hasan Mahmud (1-38) and Mehidy Hasan Miraz, who bowled just two overs, sent openers Takudzwanashe Kaitano (0) and Tadiwanashe Marumani (1) packing.

Seamer Ebadot Hossain (2-38) took little time to make a mark on his debut as he struck twice in consecutive deliveries in the sixth over.

He pulled back the length to have Wessly Madhevere (1) caught at point before going through the gates of dangerman Sikandar Raza (0) with a measured yorker.

When Taijul Islam (2-34) struck in his first over, trapping Innocent Kaia (10) in front with an arm ball, Zimbabwe were left teetering on 31 for five inside the powerplay.

The Eagles desperately needed to flourish. But as Tony Munyonga (13) took the initiative, Taijul spun the ball past him for a stumping before the hosts could reach 50.

Having returned to the eleven, Mustafizur (4-17) varied his length and pace well to make inroads. Both Luke Jongwe (15) and debutant Clive Madande (24) went for hoicks but mistimed bouncers to be dismissed.

After sending Madande back to the hutch, the left-arm seamer made a double strike by rolling out a slower to fool Brad Evans who popped it straight to point.

Ngarava and Nyauchi then let go of all fears and went after the bowlers. Nyauchi was caught off a no-ball on 1, but since then the pair clubbed eight boundaries and two sixes in a defiant 68 off 58 deliveries to register the Eagles’ highest ninth-wicket partnership in ODIs.

After Zimbabwe passed 150, Mustafizur went through the defences of Nyauchi as the series ended 2-1 in favour of the hosts.

Earlier, Tamim Iqbal (19) was off to a slower start and ran himself out due to a mix-up with Anamul in the ninth over.

Having lost their captain cheaply, Bangladesh’s innings looked shaky when Evans dealt a double blow in the following over to remove Najmul Hossain Shanto and Mushfiqur Rahim for ducks.

Anamul, however, had other plans as he forged a 77-run recovery stand with Mahmudullah (39). The opener blasted six boundaries and four sixes in 76 balls before wicketkeeper Madande pouched his first ODI catch to send him packing.

As Mahmudullah played anchor in a sluggish 69-ball knock, Afif looked to up the scoring rate at the other end after being dropped by Kaia on two. Mahmudullah then dragged on to Ngarava in the 35th over as Bangladesh went five down.

Bangladesh played six batsmen, which means Afif, who was adjudged Man-of-the-Match, had to shoulder the scoring for the remaining of the innings, particularly after Miraz fell for 14. He laced his 81-ball knock with six boundaries and two sixes.

Raza was adjudged Man-of-the-Series for his heroics that helped Zimbabwe chase down Bangladesh’s 303 and 291 in the first two games.

Toufique Imrose Khalidi
Editor-in-Chief and Publisher