Chattogram: Bangladesh confirmed the Tri-nation T20 series final with a credible 39-run victory over Zimbabwe at the Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium on Wednesday(Sept.18) evening eliminating Zimbabwe from the tournament.
This win paved the way of Bangladesh-Afghanistan final on September 24 at Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium in Dhaka.
Afghanistan, who won their first two matches, will start their Chattogram-leg match by taking on Zimbabwe on Friday.
Mahmudullah’s run riot helped Bangladesh compile 175-7, their highest against Zimbabwe in this format. The target was too much to handle for an insipid Zimbabwe who was shot out for 136 in 20 overs to hand Bangladesh second victory in three matches.
For the first time in the series, Bangladesh didn’t lose any wicket before crossing 40 runs mark. In fact the new opening pair, Liton Das and Nazmul Hossain Shanto, one of the T20 debutants with Aminul Islam Biplob, combined for 49 runs in just 4.5 overs to give the side a solid platform.
Mahmudullah was unstoppable as he guided the lower order to propel Bangladesh to a position where they desired to reach. Mahmudullah struck one four and five sixes, all of which came through by clean shot to blast his 62 off 41, his fourth fifty plus knock in this format.
He was dismissed at the last over by a full toss delivery of Kyle Jervis but before then Bangladesh was in good position.
Jervis claimed 3-32 in his four overs while Christopher Mpofu took 2-42.
Bangladesh however shattered any hopes of Zimbabwe to at least give them a scare when they reduced the visitors to 8-3 with Saifuddin beginning the wicket riot, claiming Brendan Taylor for 0 in the fifth ball of the innings.
Shakib Al Hasan and Shafiul Islam sliced out the top order before a brief resistance by skipper Hamilton Masakadza and Tinotenda Mutumbodzi saw Zimbabwe sharing 27 runs.
Leg-spinner Aminul Islam Biplob broke the partnership, by taking out Mutumbodzi for 11 for his maiden wicket before getting the prized scalp of Masakadza who made run-a-ball-25.
At the other hand, Shafiul kept the things tight to make the Zimbabwe batsmen life hell and reduced them to 44-6 in 9 overs. The match was finished here indeed but Richmond Mutumbami with 32 ball-54 just reduced the margin.
Apart from Shafiul Islam’s 3-36, debutant Aminul Islam Biplob claimed 2-18. Mustafizur Rahman also grabbed 2-38 after grabbing two wickets in last over before reaching 50-wicket mark in T20 cricket for Bangladesh after Shakib Al Hasan. In fine Bangladesh after a long time displayed a perfect and almost flawless match.