March 9, 2015. This date will be written in golden words in the history of Bangladesh cricket as Mashrafe Mortaza and co. earned their place in last eight stages of ICC Cricket World 2015 following a historic win against England. It was a close match where Bangladesh managed to prevail. An overjoyed Sandipan Banerjee lists out five important reasons for this “Bangla-Magic”.
1. Mature batting by Mahmudullah and Soumya Sarkar: Losing the toss and invited by Eoin Morgan to bat first on a wicket which was under cover in earlier part of the day wasn’t exactly the start Bangladeshwere looking for.And when the scoreboard reflected 9/2 in 2.1 overs, the Bangladeshis were looking down the barrier.
But some responsible batting by one of the most technically sound batsman of the country, Mahmudullah and the talented youngster Soumya Sarkar rescued their team. Their 86-run partnership saved the day for the green brigade.
2. Mushfiqur Rahim’s responsible performance: Bangladesh were again in trouble when in the middle overs two wickets fell in quick successions and one of those was Shakib Al Hasan. At 99 for four, Mushfiqur joined Mahmudullah at the crease. From there the brothers-in law pair control of the innings through a 141-run partnership for the fifth wicket. It changed the complexion of the game completely. This was the partnership which gave Bangladesh bowlers the platform to script a historic victory. Also don’t forget, Rahim also took four important catches an ran-out Moeen Ali in the second half of the game.
3. The captaincy of Mashrafe Mortaza: The attacking captaincy of Mashrafe Mortaza was another reason for this emphatic victory of Bangladesh. Chasing 276 to win, England were proceeding well. To break the rhythm of the batsmen, Mortaza brought six fielders inside circle and asked his bowlers to bowl according to the field. This strategy worked a couple of times for him as the batsmen were frustrated and played rash shots to get out.
The wickets of Joe Root, Ian Bell and James Taylor were results of this tactics. Mashrafe also had slips for new batsmen, including one for James Anderson when England needed 16 off 11 balls! That slip stopped one ball and kept Anderson strike to face Rubel Hussain, and the rest is history.
4. The Bangladesh pace trio at its best: This was probably the best ever performance by the much talked-about Bangladesh pace trio of Mashrafe, Taskin Ahmed and Rubel. All wickets fell to the pacers when England were expecting a trial by spin. This performance again proved the fact that the current pace attack is the best Bangladesh ever had.
5. The great English collapses: England‘s poor form in recent past and lack of confidence in their abilities also helped Bangladesh’s cause. Wherever it looked like match was heading towards England, Peter Moores’ boys managed to trigger out two collapses on Monday. England slumped from 121 for two to 163 for six during the first collapse; during the second, they were all out for 260 from being 238 for six.
More than anything, Bangladesh looked the better side of the two at Adelaide Oval. It was certainly not an upset: Bangladesh did not push the door to the quarter-finals to make their way; they broke the door to barge in. It was certainly the greatest moment in their chequered history.
(Sandipan Banerjeeis a reporter at CricketCountry. Cricket has been the biggest passion for him since his childhood. So, when it came to choosing his career, he chose to turn his passion into his profession. Apart from cricket he likes mountain trekking, river rafting, and photography. His twitter handle is @im_sandipan)
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