Shanto maiden ton breaks Irish heart


BSS, Dhaka :
Najmul Hossain Shanto struck a 93-ball 117 as Bangladesh chased down 320-run for a three-wicket win over Ireland in the second ODI on Friday to take a 1-0 lead in three-match series at County Ground, Chelmsford, England.
The first game was washed out due to rain. Thanks to a brutal 113-ball 140 runs knock of Harry Tector, Ireland posted 319-6 in a game that reduced to 45 overs after rain ate up 2.15 hours. Ireland thought the total was enough to give them their first victory over Bangladesh since 2010 in ODI format.
But they had to be left heart-broken as Bangladesh raced to the victory with three balls to spare, chasing their third highest total successfully after 322 against West Indies and Scotland in 2019 and 2015 World Cup respectively.
Shanto hit a dozen of boundaries and three sixes in his knock, which was instrumental in the thrilling victory. Youngster Towhid Hridoy made 58- ball 68 and shared 131-run win Shanto to set a platform, after Bangladesh were in troublesome 101-3 in 17 overs.
Bangladesh indeed lost openers Tamim Iqbal and Liton Das for 40 runs in 10 overs, giving Ireland the hope to seal the deal with ease.
Tamim suffered a soft dismissal to be out for 7 and Liton made run-a-ball-21. Shakib Al Hasan and Shanto then added 61-run to steady the innings but Shakib was dismissed by Curtis Campher for 26 off 27 as he looked to launch the attack.
Hridoy then gave the side a pace as he struck five fours and three sixes in his knock. His assured presence was key in motivating Shanto to come down heavily on Irish bowlers.
George Dockrell broke through with the wicket of Hridoy and soon after Campher removed Shanto to derail Bangladesh innings. But Mushfiqur Rahim’s experience came handy at this point. He held the nerve to sail the side home with 28 ball-36 not out, hitting four fours.
There was a drama when Mushfiqur Rahim was out in the third ball of last over as Bangladesh needed 5 runs off 4 balls but to Ireland’s dismay, pacer Adair’s delivery was waist high, prompting umpire’s to check it and judged it a no-ball delivery.
Mushfiqur then used the free hit to send the ball across the boundary rope to also send the few Bangladesh spectator here to delirium.
Earlier, Harry Tector hammered his career-best 140 as Ireland ran through bowling line up to give the side its highest total against Bangladesh.
Tector smashed 10 sixes and seven fours in his brutal knock for which he played only 113 balls. George Dockrell complemented his knock with whirlwind 47-ball 74 not out.
Skipper Andrew Balbirnie chipped-in-with 42 runs. But after put into bat first, Ireland made a disastrous start as Bangladesh pacer Hasan Mahmud baffled them with an intriguing display of swing.
Mahmud had dangerman Paul Striling caught by wicket-keeper Mushfiqur Rahim for duck in just fifth over to give the side a solid start. Later in seventh over, he dismissed Stephen Doheny for 12, caught at point by Mehidy Hasan Miraz as Ireland were reduced to a precarious 16-2.
But Tector and Balbirnie rebuilt the innings with caution and aggression, making Bangladesh bowlers disarray. They put up 98 runs for the third wicket stand off 104 balls to bring the side back in contention.
Shoriful Islam broke the partnership, forcing Balbirnie to edge behind the wicket and thereafter gave the side a double delight, claiming the wicket of Lorcan Tucker (16) but ended up as the most expensive bowler of the side, conceding 83 runs for two wickets in nine overs.
Tector indeed came down heavily on his as he failed to show his mental strength.
Tector got ably support in Dockrell as the duo combined for 115 off just 68 balls for the sixth wicket. Tector who raised his fifty off 53 balls, completed his fourth century off just 93 balls, with a superb drive through wide of cover against Taijul Islam.
He looked more dangerous after hitting the ton, however, Ebadot Hossain finally ended his superb knock for his only wicket in the match, giving away 56 runs in nine overs. But Dockrell continued his aggression as Ireland amassed 56 runs in the last five overs. Mark Adair gave him the support with eight ball-20 not out with two sixes. Dockrell smote three fours and four sixes in his knock.
Hasan Mahmud claimed 2-48 to be the most successful bowler of Bangladesh.