Bangladesh made a bold statement that they intend to play in the main part of the competition they are hosting by thrashing Afghanistan in the World Twenty20 opener.
The Tigers, who lost to today’s opponents in this month’s Asia Cup, Afghanistan’s first defeat of a full-member nation, are one of eight teams battling it out for two places in the tournament proper, which starts on Saturday.
And Mushfiqur Rahim’s side blew Afghanistan away in Mirpur, skittling them for 72 in 17.1 overs after winning the toss.
Mohammad Shahzad hold out to extra-cover from the game’s first delivery and, although Gulbadin Naib cleared long-on for a six in the next over, Bangladesh bowled 24 dot balls in the powerplay.
Shakib Al Hasan struck twice in two balls during the last over of restrictions, initially ousting Naib for 21, and Abdur Razzak also gained two scalps as Bangladesh continued to chip away.
Shakib wrapped up the innings for outstanding figures of 3-8 as extras was one of just four double-figure contributors for Afghanistan.
In the reply Tamim Iqbal being dropped on nine was not too costly when Samiullah Shenwari trapped him in front for 21.
However, Anamul Haque completed a nine-wicket win with eight overs unused via his third six, accompanied by four fours. He was unbeaten on 44 while Shakib had 10.
Hosts Bangladesh made light of any talk of an upset as they eased past an overawed Afghanistan by nine wickets in the opening game of the ICC World Twenty20 in Dhaka.
A victory for Afghanistan over the hosts in the Asia Cup, a tournament also held in Bangladesh, had raised beliefs that a shock might be on the cards, yet in truth Mushfiqur Rahim’s side were in complete control from the off.
In front of an expectant full house, Bangladesh elected to insert their Associate opponents. The visitors never got to grips with the task in hand and were shot out for the second ever lowest International Twenty20 total of just 72 – their spin induced misery ended early in the 18th over.
That target was never going to be a test even on a pitch inducive to turn, with Anamul Haque’s unbeaten 44 taking his side home with 48 balls remaining and in the process sending the vociferous crowd wild.
© Cricket World 2014
The eight lowest ranked sides will play in two groups of four between 16th and 21st March with the group winners qualifying for the next stage.
Group A: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Hong Kong, Nepal
Group B: Ireland, Netherlands, UAE, Zimbabwe
The sides in each ‘Super 10’ group will play each other between 21st March and 1st April.
Group 1: England, New Zealand, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Group B Qualifier
Group 2: Australia, India, Pakistan, West Indies, Group A Qualifier
The semi-finals will be held on 3rd and 4th April with Mirpur hosting the final on 6th April
In the 1st match of the World T20 Qualifiers the hosts Bangladesh cruise to a comfortable victory over Afghanistan. Bangladesh chased down Afghanistan’s 72 in just 12 overs with losing just a wicket.
Match Report: Qualifiers: Group A: Match 1: Bangladesh vs Afghanistan. March 16, 2014, Shere Bangla National Stadium, Mirpur, Bangladesh
The most anticipated 1st ball of the tournament began with Mohammad Shehzad, commonly known as MS Doni of Afghanistan for copying him tried to go for a huge heave over cover was been caught by Mahmudullah off Mortaza the comeback of Bangladesh after they invited to Afghanistan to bat. Another opener Najeed and no.3 batsman Gulbadin tried to build the innings. They went for some useless strokes but survived on couple of occasions.
But Afghanistan collapse started in 6th over. On the 1st ball of the over Shakib Al Hasan dropped Gulbadin of his own bowling which went to four. But Shakib came back well dismissing both the batsmen in spare of two balls reducing Afghan to 36/3. Gulbadin top edged going for a sweep and Najeed too tried to slog and was dismissed. Soon on the 1st ball of 7th over, Nawroz Mangal was run-out trying to steer a quick run. Captain Nabi tried to rebuilt the innings but he was too dismissed, as he was caught in front of Abdul Razzak in 10th over. Karim was too dismissed by a Direct Hit after scoring 10 in 12th over.
Shafiqullah looked good hitting too boundaries of Razzak, but in the same over Afghanistan’s Asia Cup Hero Shenwari was trapped in front of wickets for 1. But the final blow for Afghan came in the next over; 15th over of the innings bowled by Mahmadullah who dismissed Shafiqullah who nicked to keeper. The tail couldn’t do much as they played 13 bals after 8th wicket before losing 9th scoring one more in this span. And finally in the 18th over, Shakib Al Hasan finished the Afghanistan’s innings by dismissing Shapoor.
Chasing a mere total of 73, Bangladesh started cautiously. Openers Tamim Iqbal and Anamul Haque scored 16 in 4 fours against a tight Afghanistan bowling. But from 5th over they started to raise the rate. Anamul hit six in each of 5th and 6th overs, which yielded them 20 runs. After putting on 45 for the opening wicket in 7.4 overs Tamim Iqbal was plumb in front of the stumps of Shenwari. Tamim Iqbal scored 21 off 27 balls, which included 2 boundaries.
But the fall of wicket was too late as they still needed 28 from 12.2 overs with Shakib Al Hasan joined Anamul. Both kept the going without any troubles as they finished of the match losing no more wickets and with 48 balls still remained. Anamul Haque remained unbeaten on 44 off 33 balls which included 4 boundaries and 3 sixers. His 3rd Six was the winning shot over long-on boundary. Shakib Al Hasan ended unbeaten with 10 runs, who also picked 3 wickets with the ball.
Player of the match: Shakib Al Hasan (Bangladesh)
Disappointment of the match: Mohammad Nabi (Afghanistan)
Bangladesh (A Haque 44*, Tamim Iqbal 21, Shakib Al Hasan 10*; S Shenwari 1/14) beat Afghanistan 72/10 in 17.1 overs (G Naib 21, Shafiqullah 16; Shakib Al Hasan 3/8, A Razzak 2/20) by 9 wickets
Umpires: RK Illingworth (England) , NJ Llong (England) and TV umpire – HDPK Dharmasena (Sri Lanka)