Mehidy Hasan Miraz and Mustafizur Rahman held their nerve to stitch an unbeaten last-wicket stand of 51 off 41 balls to stun India and help Bangladesh win by one wicket in their ODI series opener at the Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium (SBNCS) in Mirpur, Dhaka, on Sunday.
In a match that ebbed and flowed all the time, Bangladesh seemed to be on their way to chasing 187 after Shakib Al Hasan’s fifer and Ebadot Hossain’s four-fer bowled out India for a paltry 186 in 41.2 overs. But the Indian bowlers, led by Mohammed Siraj and Washington Sundar, triggered a Bangladesh collapse from 95/3 to 136/9 in 39.3 overs.
With the hosts being down and out, the result looked like a foregone conclusion. But Mehidy had other ideas — slicing short balls from debutant Kuldeep Sen over the third man for a brace of sixes in the 41st over. He had luck on his side in the next over as K.L Rahul dropped his catch at 15 off Thakur and Sundar did not go for a catch at third man on the very next ball.
Deepak Chahar’s introduction in the 44th over did not change fortunes for India as Mehidy scooped past the keeper and flayed over point to hit back-to-back boundaries. India had fielding lapses in the last two balls as they conceded an extra run to make it a brace and a misfield by Sundar at the deep gave Mehidy a boundary.
Mustafizur, who was off the mark with a punch through off-side, glanced Shardul Thakur through fine leg for four in the 45th over as the equation for the win came down to 10. Mehidy took Bangladesh to striking distance of a victory by slicing a short ball from Chahar in the 46th over past third man.
A no-ball while taking a single and a tight run later, Mehidy finished off the chase with a punch through cover on the last ball of the over to give Bangladesh an unforgettable come-from-behind win, being unbeaten at 38, with Mustafizur being 10 not out as India wilted under pressure in the last six overs.
Earlier, Bangladesh lost Najmul Hossain Shanto, who was caught at first slip off Chahar. In the final over of the first Power-play, Siraj was rewarded for his persistence as Anamul Haque flicked to mid-wicket. India put more pressure on captain Litton Das and Shakib but needed a little bit more luck to get scalps.
Litton finally opened up in the 14th over, pouncing on short balls from Kuldeep to hit a four and six respectively. After slog-sweeping a flighted delivery from Shahbaz Ahmed for a boundary, Das attempted a flick off Sundar in the 20th over, but Rahul grabbed a sharp catch down leg.
Shakib and Mushfiqur Rahim relied on strike rotation, before the former took on Shahbaz, lofting him over cover and sweeping through mid-wicket to collect back-to-back boundaries. But he mistimed a drive off Sundar’s flighted delivery in the 24th over and was caught by Kohli flying to his right at cover, ending a 48-run stand.
Rahim and Mahmudullah rotated the strike to stitch a 33-run stand off 69 balls for the fifth wicket. But a consistent Shardul Thakur got his reward when he trapped Mahmudullah lbw, while Siraj got one to seam in and have Rahim chop onto his stumps and uproot off-pole.
Sen returned in the 39th over to have Afif Hossain caught by juggling third man for his maiden international wicket. On the fifth ball of the over, he had another wicket when Ebadot disturbed his off-stump while trying to clip through the leg-side and was out hit-wicket.
When Siraj trapped Hasan Mahmud lbw, an Indian win looked imminent. But Mehidy and Mustafizur hung around to script a famous win for Bangladesh from the jaws of defeat.
Brief scores: India 186 all out in 41.2 overs (K.L Rahul 73, Rohit Sharma 27; Shakib Al Hasan 5-36, Ebadot Hossain 4-47) lost to Bangladesh 187/9 in 46 overs (Litton Das 41, Mehidy Hasan Miraz 38 not out; Mohammed Siraj 3-32, Washington Sundar 2-17) by one wicket