Kolkata: Bangladesh slumped to their lowest total in T20 Internationals as New Zealand flaunted the new-found comfort in Indian conditions with a whopping 75-run victory at the Eden Gardens on Saturday.
B’desh pacer Mustafizur Rahman (left) and NZ skipper Williamson
Chasing 146 on a slow turner, Mashrafe Mortaza and his men were shot out for 70 in 15.4 overs, eight less than their previous low — in Hamilton in February 2010 against the same opponents. Bangladesh thus finished their World T20 campaign without a point or pride. The Kiwis confirmed top spot in Group ‘2’ with an all-win record.
Young Mustafizur Rahman’s fine figures of five-for-22 was consigned to a footnote on a disastrous day for Bangladesh.
New Zealand’s 145 for eight was build around a gritty top-order performance as skipper Kane Williamson (42 off 32), Colin Munro (35 off 33) and Ross Taylor (28 off 24) ensured a decent total on a wicket that frowned upon free strokeplay.
Bangladesh’s chase, interrupted for 14 minutes by floodlight failure, suffered early setback when the in-form Tamim was run out by a direct hit from backward point by Munro in the very second over. Stifled by tight bowling and sharp fielding, they were soon under mounting run-rate pressure. Bats flayed, in desperation than design, and wickets fell at regular intervals to further jeopardise the chase.
Mustafizur, who is in his first year with the national side, became only the second from his country to grab a fiver in T20 International after left-arm spinner Elias Sunny’s five-for-13 against Ireland in Belfast four years ago. Showing great guile and control, the 20-year-old struck in each of his four overs on Saturday. Beginning his quest by knocking back left-hander Henry Nicholls’ off-stump with an off-cutter that spun like a top, Mustafizur exploited the slow wicket every time the ball was lobbed to him. He bowled top-scorer Williamson and then deceived Grant Elliot with one that he held back before finishing with two more in the final over of the innings.
Bangladesh could have restricted their opponents to a lower total had they not been let down by shoddy fielding and an umpiring error that had Munro surviving a leg-before appeal against Shakib Al Hasan when he was on eight.
New Zealand 145-8 in 20 overs (K Williamson 42, C Munro 35; M Rahman 5-22) beat
Bangladesh 70 all out in 15.4 overs (S Hom 16*; G Elliott 3-12, I Sodhi 3-21) by 75 runs