Bangladesh warmed-up for their final in the tri-nation one-day international tournament with a crushing 91-run win over Zimbabwe, but not before a spectacular mid-innings collapse saw them restricted to 216-9 in Dhaka on Tuesday.
Bowlers made a stunning effort to defend the modest score, folding Zimbabwe for 125 in 36.3 overs, - the side’s second lowest total against Bangladesh - which enabled the hosts to record their 10th successive win over them.
Sakib al Hasan produced yet another all-round effort as he claimed 3-34 while scoring 51 off 80 deliveries with bat.
Tamim Iqbal struck his third consecutive fifty, 76 off 105 balls, and shared 106-run with Sakib to give Bangladesh a base for strong total, but the Tigers collapsed between 35th to 43rd over to lose six wickets for 23 runs, which left them satisfied with a below-par total.
They have their last three batsman Sunzamul Islam (19), Mustafizur Rahman (18 not out) and Rubel Hossain (eight not out) to thank for taking them past 200-run, something which appeared to be a distant hope after eight wicket fell for 170.
The trio collected 45 runs together to snatch the momentum back from Zimbabwe and Bangladesh did not have to look back.
Rubel hit Kyle Jarvis a straight six in the final over before Mustafiz signed off Bangladesh’s innings with a boundary to give Bangladesh a psychological advantage over their familiar foes.
Mashrafee bin Murtaza (2-29) and Sakib took full advantage to share four wickets between them in their opening spell, which left Zimbabwe reduced to 34-4.
Mustafiz made things difficult for Zimbabwe with his tight line and length earning him three successive maidens.
The pressure of dot balls benefited left-arm spinner Sunzamul Islam, who took two wickets off successive balls to aggravate Zimbabwe’s problem before finishing with 2-28.
Sikandar Raza hung on for a long period to provide a dogged resistance but once he dragged a short-pitch delivery of Mustafiz to depart for 39 runs the game ended as a contest.
Mustafiz claimed the final wicket to return with a figure of 2-16 as Mahmudullah took the catch of Jarvis at mid-off.
Tamim was named man of the match after his successive innings of 84 not out and 84 in the tournament were overshadowed by Sakib in previous two matches.
Tamim, at 42 also become the highest run-getter in ODI in a single venue, surpassing for Sri Lankan opener Sanath Jayasuriya’s 2,514 runs at R.
Premadasa Stadium in Colombo.
He soon achieved another milestone when the left-hander reached 66 to become first Bangladeshi to complete 6,000 runs in ODIs.
His dismissal to Zimbabwe skipper Graeme Cremer at a crucial juncture of the innings, however, had threatened to
spoil his good works only for the bowlers to save his day.
Cremer claimed 4-32 runs for Zimbabwe while Kyle Jarvis chipped in with 3-42.
Zimbabwe still have the chance to qualify for the finals on January 27 if hosts Bangladesh defeated Sri Lanka by big margin in their next match on Thursday.
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