Bangladesh made history in Napier three days after winning their first ODI match in New Zealand; this time, it was their first T20I victory on New Zealand soil.
After choosing to bat first on what Jimmy Neesham considered a “naughty little wicket” at the halfway point, Bangladesh held New Zealand to 134/9 with five wickets shared between Mahedi Hasan and Shoriful Islam. They then chased the total with eight balls remaining and five wickets remaining.
NZ reel at 1 for 3!
Everything began in the opening over of the game. Mahedi Hasan bowled Tim Seifert after he got the new ball to spin, but what happened next was even more spectacular. The next over saw two wickets go to left-arm bowler Shoriful Islam, who first got Finn Allen to edge behind and then trapped Glenn Phillips leg before wicket. After that, Mahedi came back to remove Daryl Mitchell from the game. He did this by slicing one over Mitchell’s edge and getting through his defenses. Mark Chapman’s clutch shots in the final PowerPlay over allowed NZ to reach 36/4 after six overs.
Santner and Neesham get together
They shared the biggest partnership of the innings, scoring 41 runs for the sixth wicket, which forced Bangladesh to consider their options for the first time. In the 14th innings, Tanzim Hasan Sakib, the rookie, came in for a bit of stick and gave up 15 runs to the pair. Santner misplayed a pull and Soumya Sarkar caught him inches above the ground at mid-wicket, forcing Shoriful Islam to return and break the stand.
The party welcomes Mustafizur
Top scorer Neesham (48 off 29) looked set to lead New Zealand to a par total, but Mustafizur caught him in the deep after he scored six, four, and six off three straight deliveries in the 16th and 17th overs. After that, the pacer bowled the 19th over and gave up just 1 run, almost guaranteeing that New Zealand’s total would be below par.
Litton Das tosses an anchor
Rony Talukdar and Nazmul Hossain Shanto were lost by Bangladesh during the PowerPlay, but Litton (42* off 36) was able to play patiently and stop more damage due to the target’s nature. At the other end, Soumya Sarkar’s attacking intent was helpful, as his 22 off 15 helped chip in important runs off the target. After Ben Sears bowled him, Mahedi Hasan and Towhid Hridoy followed suit, allowing Bangladesh to comfortably reach the goal.