Bangladesh captain Shakib Al Hasan played a scintillating unbeaten 45-ball 70 as Bangladesh snapped Afghanistan’s four-match winnings spree securing a four-wicket victory in the last of the Tri-nation T-20 series group match on Saturday(Sept.21) evening at the Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium in Chattogram.
In what turned out to be the dress rehearsal of final after the early elimination of tournament’s third team Zimbabwe, Bangladesh also gained the psychological advantage.
The bowlers, however, paved the way, having restricted Afghanistan to 138-7. The visitors kept them in the hunt by taking wickets at regular intervals but Shakib was unfazed by the wickets tumbling around him and struck his ninth T-20 half-century as Bangladesh reached 139-6 in 19 overs.
Shakib helped the side recover from shaky start after Bangladesh was reduced to 12-2, losing the two openers-Liton Das (4) who was dismissed followed Nazmul Hossain Shanto (4) in quick succession.
Shakib got support in Mushfiqur Rahim and the duo added 58-run for the third wicket stand before he was out for 26.
Finally Shakib and Mosaddek brought needed win for a moral boosting before the final of the tri-nation series to be played on next Tuesday (Sept.24) at the Home of Bangladesh cricket Sher-e- Bangla stadium, Dhaka.
Afghanistan however made a flying start after Shakib decided to bowl winning the toss.
Hazratullah Zazai and Rahmanullah Gurbaz combined for a 75-run partnership for the opening stand, playing just 57 ball and it seemed Afghanistan took the upper-hand of the match.
But after scoring 75 runs in a heroic fashion Afghan wickets started falling like nine- pins and finally they could reach 138 by brilliant bowling attacks of the Bangladesh pacers as well as spinners.