CHITTAGONG. — Bangladesh won the second ODI cricket match against Zimbabwe at the Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium in Chittagong by seven wickets yesterday. Earlier, Brandon Taylor top-scored with 75 as Zimbabwe made 246-7.
Asked to bat first in a must-win contest, Zimbabwe lost skipper Hamilton Masakadza (14) but Taylor, with two useful knocks from Sean Williams (47) and Sikandar Raza (49), guided the visitors to a competitive score.
Taylor, who was reprieved on 42 by TV umpire after being given leg-before initially, struck nine fours and a six in his 73-ball innings. Young all-rounder Mohammad Saifuddin claimed highest 3-45 for Bangladesh.
The home side won Sunday’s opening match of the series by 28-runs. The third and final match of the series will be held at the same ground on Friday.
In yesterday’s match,after the fast bowlers significantly slowed Zimbabwe down to a middling 246 for 7 – they looked set to double their score of 147 for 2 at the halfway mark – openers Liton Das and Imrul Kayes struck aggressive half-centuries to give Bangladesh a series win.
The pair added 148 to ensure Bangladesh’s passage was a smooth one, victory coming in the 45th over when Mohammad Mithun pulled a long hop for six to take an unassailable 2-0 lead.
Mohammad Saifuddin, playing in only his fourth ODI, left a mark with a three-wicket haul that bottled up pressure towards the end overs.
Then heavy dew made the ball greasy, thereby hampering Zimbabwe’s bowling plans. This played into the hands of the Bangladesh openers who shellacked their way towards the target, wiping off half the runs inside the first 25 overs, before Liton fell looking to hit inside-out. Beaten by turn and dip, he sliced a flighted delivery to point to fall for a 77-ball 83.
As Liton sped away, Imrul consolidated and was the recipient of a reprieve in the 24th over on 58 when Brendan Taylor put down a tough chance. But soon after Liton fell, Sikandar Raza then removed Fazle Mahmud for his second successive duck – he became fourth Bangladeshi to earn this unwanted feat in his first two ODIs. Having fluffed the opportunity on the first grab, Taylor somehow managed to complete the stumping.
Bangladesh recovered from that little spell quickly as Zimbabwe gifted Imrul another life on 71 when Mavuta dropped him at midwicket off Doland Tiripano. Mushfiqur and Imrul added 59 runs for the third wicket before the latter fell to Raza at long-off in the 38th over. Mushfiqur and Mohammad Mithun then added the remaining 36 runs for the fourth wicket, as Zimbabwe’s woeful 2018 continued.
But it could’ve been so different. Brendan Taylor started aggressively, picking off runs without playing a shot in anger. It seemed he was set, but all the build-up came crashing down when he played an inopportune reverse sweep to be dismissed on 75.
All along, Sean Williams was just pottering along, giving Taylor company before he realised the need to step up. He consolidated and was three short of a half-century when he bottom-edged a cut to the wicketkeeper to break a 41-run stand with Raza. This somewhat denied Zimbabwe a late flourish, even though Raza and PJ Moor stuck in and took the innings deep before a clutch of wickets threw them back.