Saturday, October 31, 2009

Tamim, Ashraful guide Bangladesh to four-wicket win

DHAKA: Contrasting half-centuries from Tamim Iqbal and Mohammad Ashraful guided Bangladesh to a four-wicket victory over Zimbabwe on Saturday for a 2-1 lead in the five-match ODI series.

Tamim blazed 80 off 72 balls, hitting 10 fours and two sixes, and Ashraful struck 63 off 91 as Bangladesh made 198/6 in 40.4 overs after their spinners had restricted Zimbabwe to 196 all out.

Opener Tamim looked set for his third One-day century before a moment of madness meant he was stumped by Brendan Taylor off leg spinner Graeme Cremer, ending his 98-run second-wicket stand with Ashraful.

Ashraful, who completed his 19th half century, was bowled by Ray Price and his departure triggered a mini collapse.

The hosts lost four quick wickets to be reduced from 175/2 to 194/6, but it was too late for Zimbabwe to make any impact on the result.

Zimbabwe's captain Hamilton Masakadza, standing in for injured skipper Prosper Utseya, scored 84 to become one of only three men to have broken 1,000 One-day runs this year. The others were Australians Ricky Ponting and Michael Hussey.

But Masakadza, who raced to his half-century off 36 balls, received no real support from the rest of the team, with the next highest score a 29 from Charles Coventry.

Bangladesh bolstered their attack with fourth spinner Enamul Haque, who repaid them with figures of 3-45, while seamer Nazmul Hossain had 3-13.

The final two matches of the series will be held in Chittagong on November 3 and 5.

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