May 042013

Seamer Ziaur Rahman basked in a Man of the Match performance, after leading Bangladesh to a resounding 121-run win over Bangladesh in Saturday’s first ODI at the Queens Sports Club in Bulawayo.

Rahman became the fourth Bangladesh pace bowler to secure a limited-overs five-for, after Mashrafe Mortaza, Farhad Reza and Aftab Ahmed, en route to fine figures of five for 30 in nine solid overs.

His record haul included the key scalp of opener Hamilton Masakadza, whose 38 was as good as it got in Zimbabwe’s inadequate response of 148 all out to the tourists’ 269 for eight.

“I wanted to bowl at least two dot balls per over. The batsmen would be under pressure if they were kept quiet, and that is exactly what happened,” enthused Rahman.

“I bowled wicket-to-wicket. The captain told me to bowl as straight as possible, and wait for them to make mistakes. All I wanted to do was cut down the runs, even if I didn’t get a wicket.

“I have been bowling well of late, so I had the confidence in myself. I think the lines were good, and the wicket helped too. But I never thought I would take four or five wickets in an innings.”

Defeated skipper Brendan Taylor, meanwhile, rued an entirely undisciplined performance from the batsmen, whose shoddy shot selection and questionable strokeplay saw five of the 10 wickets perish bowled.

“I don’t know what to say really. The Bangladesh bowlers bowled well, they bowled stump-to-stump. That is what we expected, but they did not bowl anything that would get the majority of our batsmen out, the batsmen somehow found ways to get out,” lamented Taylor.

“We have been saying the same thing for the last two months now, we said that the batsmen must play straight, but they got out playing across the line. There were too many batsmen bowled on a good pitch.”

The second match of the three-fixture series gets underway at the same venue on Sunday.

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