Zimbabwe Tour In Bangladesh
First T20 Match Held at Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium, Dhaka on 9 March 2020
Bangladesh 200/3 ( Soumya Sarkar 62, Liton K Das 59, Tamim Iqbal 49 , W Madhevere 1/15, Sikandar Raza 1/31) beat Zimbabwe 152 All Out (TS Kamunhukawe 28,CT Mumba 25, SC Williams 20, DT Tirpano 20, Mustafizur Rahman 3/32, Aminul Islam 3/34 ) by 48 runs
Player of the Match: Soumya Sarkar
Change of format did not change the luck for lackluster Zimbabwe. Bangladesh cruised to another comfortable win by 48 runs in the first of the two matches T20 series. Bangladesh batting first cruised to 200/3 in allotted overs. Zimbabwe could go as far as 152 all out conceding yet another huge defeat by 48 runs.
Put in to bat by the tourist captain flamboyant Bangladesh openers Tamim Iqbal and Liton K Das continued their peak of the pack forms as they raced to 92 in 10.2 overs. Tamim scored 41 of 33 deliveries with 3 fours and 2 sixes. Liton was far more aggressive producing 59 runs of 39 balls striking 5 fours and 3 sixes. Standing on this solid foundation Soumya returning to the team after his matrimonial break appeared in his murderous self blasting 62 off 32 deliveries. His aggressive batting gave a telling blow to BCB decision of excluding him from all forms of central contract.
After the expected test win and clean sweep of ODI series, T20 series showed nothing different in matter of contest. Off the 5 matches across 3 formats tourists could only go to hand shaking distance of causing a major upset in the second ODI mainly due to a bit of complacency of wired team selection. Otherwise Bangladesh performance so far underlined that this Zimbabwean team is the weakest of all foreign that has toured Bangladesh. Bowling looked very ordinary, batting could not cope up with quality Bangladesh attack. However, most of the Bangladesh players could improve their personal performance, some could regain form and confidence. Only fools can forecast about outcome of a cricket match and series. But in Bangladesh there are now many fools who can safely predict a comprehensive white wash of Zimbabwe across all formats. Unless Bangladesh makes series mistakes there is no chance that this Zimbabwe would win the last T20 match. Another event of interest of yesterdays match was sudden action about Ticket sale for the spectators. BCB wanted thinner crowd attendance as according to them there could greater chances of Corona Virus infection from large crowd attendance. But one joked about BCB that their method and explanation of listing players in the central contracts showed possible Virus Infection in their thought process. How could Soumya Sarkar be excluded for any contract in any format? Soumya did it right unleashing a technical knock out to BCB selectors.
Liton and Tamim carried their ODI form as they kept almost 10 runs per over opening partnership going smoothly on a batting paradise easy paced Dhaka wicket. Boundaries and over boundaries kept flowing like fountains. Bangladesh had a very strong batting unit. With Saifuddin and Aminul included Bangladesh included 9 batsmen. Zimbabwe on the other hand with the return of Craig Irvine fielded their best available team so far on the tour. But the way Liton and Tamim set out the foundation and Soumya carried it forward it was not possible for the tourists to set up any contest. Cutter Master Mustafiz (3/32) and Leggie Aminul (3/34) did not allow leeway to the tourists as they were bundled out for 152. While Mustafiz is likely to lead Bangladesh new ball attack across all formats restricting him to only white ball in new central contract appeared to us another shallow decision.
There are many questions being raised about the way BCB is acting. Mashrafe leaving the mantle of ODI captaincy, Mhmuddullah omission from test contract, resting automatic choice Mushfique from third ODI , declaring Tamim as captain of ODI on longer term despite prospect of Shakib Al Hasan return to in about 7 months are all decisions open to questions. What actually BCB wants? The reduction of the number of players in central contract on random basis tends to let off bad breadth about BCB revenge to the players revolt Hope these do not create any lasting impacts on the team morale.
BDST: 1325 HRS, MAR 10, 2020