MNA Sports Desk: Bangladesh got off to a flying start in the ICC Cricket World Cup crushing South Africa by 21 runs in their first match at the Kennington Oval, London on Sunday.
Chasing a target of 331 runs, the Proteas were restricted to 309 runs for eight in stipulated 50 overs.
Mustafizur Rahman took three wickets conceding 67 runs in 10 overs while Mohammad Saifuddin scalped two for 57 runs in eight overs.
Earlier, two brilliant half century by world number one all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan and former captain Mushfiqur Rahim helped Bangladesh post their highest-ever ODI total of 330 against South Africa, UNB reports.
Bangladesh’s previous highest ODI total was 329 runs against Pakistan in Dhaka in 2015 and their highest World Cup total was 322 against Scotland in the last World Cup in New Zealand in 2015.
South Africa captain Faf du Plessis won the toss and opted to bowl bat first in a cloudy weather. The Protea captain wanted to exploit the condition with his pace line-up that includes Kagiso Rabada and Lungi Ngidi.
However, Bangladesh made a good start with openers Tamim Iqbal and Soumya Sarkar adding 60 runs in 8.2 overs.
In the fifth over, Soumya hit Ngidi for three fours to accumulate 14 runs from that over. One over later, he struck Ngidi for two fours more. The Tigers completed 50 runs in seven overs.
But right after this rampant start, the Tigers lost Tamim for 16 off 29 with two fours in the ninth over.
South African captain Faf du Plessis gave the ball to Andile Phehlukwayo as their first change bowler. He removed Tamim off a deadly bouncer. The southpaw tried to move the bat away but at the end, he managed an outside edge as Quinton de Kock took an easy catch behind the wicket.
On the other end, Soumya was cruising to a big score. However, du Plessis gave the ball to Chris Morris as their fourth bowler. He came in and removed Soumya for 42 runs off 30 with nine fours.
Both of the first two bowling changes worked good for the Proteas as both of the Bangladeshi openers fell while facing a short ball each.
Bangladesh reached the 100-run mark in the 16th over in which the Tigers scored 12 runs relying on a six by Shakib Al Hasan, who came to bat at number three after the dismissal of Soumya. Mushfiqur Rahim joined him in the 3rd stand and they together scored 100 runs off 95 balls. Bangladesh completed 200 for 2 in 32 overs.
The entertaining partnership of 142 runs, the highest partnership of Bangladesh in the World Cup in any wicket, ended with the dismissal of Shakib.
The southpaw batsman fell for 75 off 84 with eight fours and one six. It was his 43rd ODI fifty and the sixth in the World Cup. He was removed by a wonderful delivery off Imran Tahir.
Imran added further blow to the Bangladesh innings when he also dismissed Mohammad Mithun for 21 off 21. The right handed batsman went to sweep Imran but missed the line and saw his stumps got shattered.
Bangladesh got a little bit slow in 30-40 overs. At the end of the 30th over, Bangladesh were 190 for 2. But in the 10 over (30-40) they scored only 54 at the with a run rate of 5.4 and lost two more wickets as well.
Bangladesh’s aim to post a big total got further blow when Mushfiqur fell for 78 off 80 with eight fours. Phehlukwayo delivered the ball at the shorter length and Mushfiqur tried to clear it through the backward point area. But unfortunately, the ball went fielder. It was Mushfiqur’s 34th fifty in ODI and fifth in the World Cup.
Eventually, relying on the some fiery displays from Mahmudullah Riyad (46 off 33 with three fours and one six) and Mosaddek Hossain (26 off 20 with four fours), Bangladesh ended the innings scoring record 330 for six wickets in 50 overs. In the last 10 overs, Bangladesh added 86 runs losing two wickets.
For South Africa, Phehlukwayo, Morris and Imran took two wickets each conceding 52, 73 and 57 runs respectively.