A virtuoso innings of 128* from the Bangladeshi middle order batsman Mahmudullah went in vain as New Zealand clinched a narrow three wicket win at Seddon Park, Hamilton. Martin Guptill’s 105 and useful knocks from Ross Taylor, Corey Anderson and Grant Elliot ensured that the Kiwi juggernaut rolled on with a 100% record in the Pool A of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015.
Mahmudullah and Soumya Regroup After Early Losses
Trent Boult and Tim Southee repaid the captain’s faith after Brendon McCullum had won the toss and elected to field. Trent Boult played his part as he made full use of the seaming conditions to get rid of Bangladesh openers Imrul Kayes and Tamim Iqbal.
However, the impressive and highly rated Kiwi bowling attack failed to capitalize on the early breakthroughs. As a result, Mahmudullah and Soumya Sarkar succeeded in consolidating the Bangladesh innings. Despite playing a tentative and defensive kind of game at the outset, the hero from Bangladesh’s win against England, Mahmudullah, did not succumb to the pressure. The result was a calm innings of 128 runs from 123 deliveries. Soumya Sarkar for his part, supported his partner at the other end with a half century. A brisk 90 run partnership was thus produced for the third wicket.
Mahmudullah remained unbeaten at the close of the innings and useful contributions from Shakib-Al-Hasan (23) and Sabbir Rahman (40) ensured that Bangladesh reached a respectable total of 288/7.
Shakib Al Hasan Makes Inroads; Martin Guptill And Ross Taylor Pick Up The Pieces
In a rather surprising move, Shakib Al Hasan introduced himself in the first over of the second innings. The move benefitted Bangladesh immensely as the dangerous Brendon McCullum and Kane Williamson were removed and the Kiwis were left staring down the barrel, with the score at 33-2 in 4.5 overs.
The rest of the first powerplay was played with complete care and watchfulness by both Martin Guptill and Ross Taylor. The plan was clear – to consolidate and stem the loss of wickets. Therefore, following the close of the first powerplay, the duo began to take calculated risks. As a result, when Guptill fell after scoring his century, the Kiwis were in a position where they could win comfortably.
Corey Anderson And Grant Elliot Seal Win
A quickfire 39 from Corey Anderson and another supporting role from all rounder Grant Elliot (39) ensured that the Kiwis were in a position where it was their game to lose. Despite the loss of wickets at regular intervals, because of the incisive bowling of Shakib Al Hasan, Nasir Hossain and Rubel Hossain, the co-hosts were successful in chasing the Bangladesh target. Tim Southee and Daniel Vettori came up with a few lusty hits at the end, to end the tension before the last over began. 7 balls were still to be bowled when Southee hit the fifth ball of the 49th over for a boundary, which sealed the game.
Bangladesh: 288/7 in 50 overs (Mahmudullah 128*, Grant Elliot 2/27)
New Zealand: 290/7 in 48.5 overs (Martin Guptill 105, Sakib Al Hasan 4/55)
Man Of The Match: Martin Guptill