Bangladesh showed a lot of character to post a fightback defending a modest total    Getty Images
Led by Mashrafe Mortaza, Bangladesh showed a lot of character to post a fightback defending a modest total vs England Getty Images

Bangladesh defeated England by 34 runs in the second One-Day International (ODI) to keep the series alive. Winning the toss, Jos Buttler, invited Bangladesh to bat. Bangladesh did not get off to a blistering start as they lost wickets in quick succession and were tottering at 39 for 3 at one stage. Nonetheless, Bangladesh’s Mr. Dependable, Mahmudullah’s 75 off 88 balls along with skipper, Mashrafe Mortaza‘s 44 bailed the team out to 238 for 8 in 50 overs. England were in all sorts of trouble in the modest chase as they were 25 for 3 but Jos Buttler’s 57 and Jonny Bairstow’s 35 kept them in hunt. After the dismissal of the duo, wickets fell in clusters to give Bangladesh a much needed win and keep the series alive before the final ODI at Chittagong. FULL CRICKET SCORECARD: Bangladesh vs England, 2nd ODI at Sher-e-Bangla Stadium, Dhaka

Bangladesh had to get off to a good start on a pitch where they had batted well the last night. However, they were in for a shock as in-form opener, Imrul Kayes departed for 11. Tamim Iqbal was expected to carry on well after losing his partner but that was not the case. Tamim had a start in the first ODI as well and but again disappointed on missing out again in a crunch game for Bangladesh as he went for 14. Sabbir Rahman again failed to deliver as his poor run of form continued to haunt the hosts and he went for 3.

England were on target for most part of their bowling as runs were hard to come by for the hosts. Losing three quick wickets, Bangladesh were in a spot of bother when Mahmudullah and wicketkeeper-batsman, Mushfiqur Rahim, came together for a fifty-run stand for the fourth wicket. Rahim was keeping the scoreboard moving with a gritty innings but got out for 21.

Mahmudullah was expected to carry on as he was looking calm and composed as ever. Shakib Al Hasan, Bangladesh s best all-rounder and impact player, came out in the middle but sadly did not contribute much to the team’s cause.

This brought youngster Mossadek Hossain to the crease and he showed signs of dividing the workload with Mahmudullah but the latter went for 75. Mahmudullah, who is a handy batsman off spin, tried to sweep a Adil Rashid ball but missed it and was plumbed in front of wicket. He had to make the long walk back to the pavilion with Bangladesh struggling to get past the 200-run mark.

However, Mortaza and Nasir Hossain added vital runs in their team s kitty during the last few overs with skipper being aggressive in particular. Mortaza used the long handle to good effect as he blasted England s David Willey, in particular, for some big hits straight down the ground. The two added vital runs down the order which shifted the momentum towards the home side, a little, before the innings break. ALSO READ: BAN vs ENG, 2nd ODI: Rahim gets to 4,000 runs

Mortaza s intend was clear to give his bowlers adequate runs to defend and keep the series alive till the last ODI as he took on the bowlers from ball one and for the first time caused some hiccups in the England dugout. Mortaza was up for the challenge and was determined to lead from the front. His 44 was significant in the aspect of the game and it showed as Bangladesh came out all in the field to defend the modest total against England’s deep batting line-up.

Bangladesh’s nose were ahead in the second innings as Mortaza gave them a flying start taking important scalps of Jason Roy, James Vince and Ben Stokes. Stokes was the centurion from England’s first ODI and his wicket meant a lot to the hosts. They were pumping in confidence and that showed as they made England work hard for runs. Bangladesh got assistance from some lateral movement on offer which pushed the England side on backfoot. Buttler and Bairstow stitched a vital 79-run stand and took the score in three figures. ALSO READ: Bangladesh vs England, 2nd ODI: Mahmudullah, Mashrafe Mortaza give host fighting chance

Just when they were looking dangerous to take the game out of hosts’ hands, Bairstow was dismissed by Taskin Ahmed who edged one to wicketkeeper, Rahim. This started the collapse of the visitors who lost Moeen Ali (to a very poor shot) and Buttler soon. Buttler’s wicket was the turning point as he was looking set to take his team past the finish line. He was moving down the track, shuffling and timing the ball from the middle.

Buttler’s dismissal injected some controversy on the field as all Bangladeshi fielders celebrated loud in jubilation to show their eagerness seeing his fall but may have pushed the envelope. Their celebrations did not please the stand-in England skipper who took them on, in particular Mahmudullah, as he felt it was to provoke some kind of reaction from him.

Nonetheless, Mortaza’s regular wickets and Taskin’s sharp spell helped Bangladesh level the three-ODI series with one game to play at Chittagong. Mortaza was the Man of the Match for his aggressive knock with the bat, inspiring spell with ball and accurate captaincy.

Brief scores:

Bangladesh 238 for 8 in 50 overs (Mahmudullah 75, Mashrafe Mortaza 44; Chris Woakes 2 for 40, Jake Bell 2 for 44) beat England 204 in 44.4 overs (Jonny Bairstow 35, Jos Buttler 57; Mashrafe Mortaza 4 for 29, Taksin Ahmed 3 for 47) by 34 runs.