Shakib Al Hasan    Getty Images
Shakib Al Hasan Getty Images

Colombo: As they gear up for the Twenty20 tri-series title clash against a formidable India, skipper Shakib Al Hasan says Bangladesh have “momentum” after their spectacular win over the hosts. Bangladesh eked out a thrilling two-wicket win over Sri Lanka in a nail-biting virtual semifinal last night to book a place in the final. “India are a very good side but we have the momentum, so hopefully we can continue the performance,” said Shakib.

Talking about the semifinal, Shakib said: “You can’t expect more than that in a T20 game. There was everything. Emotions, drama, everything. We are lucky to be on the winning side. “Kusal Perera and Thisara Perera batted very well, got themselves into a winning position. I had only one hit before I came into the game, so I knew I wasn’t 100%. It was important to rotate the strike and give it to Mahmudullah. This is one of our best innings in the last five overs.”

Mahmudullah, who played a match-winning 18-ball 43, studded with three boundaries and two sixes to win the Player of the Match, described his knock as one of his “best innings”. “When Shakib came into the team, that was a big boost. My plan was to strike the ball as hard as I can. To see the ball properly and try to hit accordingly. I was quite nervous (in the last few overs),” he said.

“When I and Shakib were there, I was at ease but Shakib’s wicket put pressure on me. Other guys came up to me and believed that we’ll do it.” The match witnessed some ugly scenes in the 20th over when Bangladesh claimed that the first two balls of Isuru Udana’s final over were no balls. Bangladesh needed 12 off the final over and they felt the deliveries should have been called as such for height.

Both ended as dot balls and even resulted in a run out. Bangladesh captain Shakib Al Hasan also seen gesticulating at his batsmen, appearing to be conveying that they leave the field in protest against umpiring errors. Talking about the incident, Mahmudullah said: “The confusion was that the ball (Mustafizur’s wicket ball) would be the first bumper (sic) of the over but it’s in the past now, so let’s forget it.”

Sri Lanka skipper Thisara Perera was disappointed to not able to defend 160, which he felt as a reasonable target. “Very tough game. Really disappointed. I have to say something about our crowd — thanks for everything. I’m sorry about not making it to the final,” he said.

“I sometimes take some time for my batting, I can do something only after that (what went wrong). 160 is a reasonable target. Last few series, we did well. Really good outcome from our juniors.”