Mushfiqur Rahim produced one of the finest knocks from a Bangladeshi to help the side win    AFP
Mushfiqur Rahim produced one of the finest knocks from a Bangladeshi to help the side win AFP

Bangladesh pulled off a sensational chase in the third T20I of the Nidahas Trophy 2018 against hosts Sri Lanka at R Premadasa Stadium, Colombo. This is the fourth best run-chase in T20Is and Bangladesh’s best, in fact the highest successful chase from a subcontinent side. The 215-run chase was architected by wicketkeeper Mushfiqur Rahim, who blasted a 35-ball 72 not out and he received good support from openers Liton Das and Tamim Iqbal.

Chasing 215, Bangladesh made changes to their batting line-up, sending right-handed Liton to open with Tamim. Bangladesh blasted 74 in their first six overs, losing Liton for a 19-ball 42 on the penultimate ball of the Powerplay. Tamim soon fell for 47, falling miscuing one from Thisara Perera. Soumya Sarkar had a slow start but picked up later, however, there was no stopping Mushfiqur. The little man kept finding vacant regions on the field and added 51 with Sarkar and a 22-ball 42 with skipper Mahmudullah, who perished with 22 needed off 15 balls revoking memories of Bangladesh’s collapse against India in 2016 World T20.

With nine needed off the final over, the limping Mushfiqur, who was cramping, was aided by the sloppy Sri Lankan fielding as he found a boundary on the off-side, followed by a two and single to record the sensational win.

“To be honest, from the beginning we thought we could win. Tamim and Liton gave us a good start. Then Mushy was outstanding. It was amazing to see and good inspiration for us. We knew they might bowl Akila (Dananjaya) in the first or second over, and that’s why we sent Liton at the top of the order,” Mahmudullah told after the win.

Mushfiqur dedicated the win to his infant son.

“The way Liton and Tamim set it up for us was outstanding. It was a nice track to bat on. I dedicate this knock to my son; he’s just 35 days old. At the end of the day, winning is the most important,” he said after winning the Man of the Match award.

Electing to bowl, Bangladesh bowlers were taken to the cleaners by the Sri Lankan openers, who shared a 56-run stand from 27 balls. Mustafizur Rahman slower cutter foxed Danushka Gunathilaka. The carnage of Kusals began then. Kusal Mendis (57 runs off 30 balls) and Kusal Perera (74 off 48 balls) added 85 off 53 balls to take Sri Lanka to a strong position.

Bangladesh pulled it back from 13 to 15th over, putting a check on the runs and bagging the wickets of Kusal Mendis, Dasun Shanaka and Dinesh Chandimal. Upul Tharanga took it on from there, belting a 15-ball 32* to help Sri Lanka reach a challenging total.

With this win, all three teams including India have one win after the first round.

Brief scores

Sri Lanka 214 for 6 in 20 overs [Kusal Mendis 57 (30), Kusal Perera 74 (48), Upul Tharanga 32 (15)*; Mustafizur Rahman 4-0-48-3] lost to Sri Lanka 215 for 5 in 20 overs [Tamim Iqbal 47 (29), Liton Das 43 (19), Mushfiqur Rahim 72 (35)*] by five wickets

Man of the Match: Mushfiqur Rahim

Full Scorecard