Hosts Bangladesh hung onto a nervous 27-run win over Irelands in what was a Minnows Clash in Group B yesterday evening at the Shere Bangla National Stadium. In front of a vociferous home crowd at Mirpur, Bangladesh were inspired to a victory despite putting up only 205 on the board after winning the toss.
The hosts struggled with the bat as none of the batsmen went onto score even a half century. Opener Tamim Iqbal who strangely got the Man of the Match was the top scorer in the shaky innings with a 43-ball 44. Tamim Iqbal had left Bangladesh in trouble actually at 68 for 3 and he batted only 11.1 overs! For the Irish, medium pacer Andre Botha was the most successful bowler taking 3 for 32. Left arm spinner George Dockrell who is just 18 years of age did a good job too conceding only 23 in his 10 overs while taking two wickets.
Ireland in their run chase were losing wickets at regular intervals to get reduced to 110 for 5. During the crunch time, Irelands lost four wickets to fast bowler Shafiul Islam to get bowled out for 178 in 45 overs. The top scorer for Ireland was middle order batsman Kevin O’Brien who made 37 from 40 balls before pulling Shafiul Islam into the hands of deep squareleg to open up door for a Bangladeshi win.
It was sheer pity that Shafiul Islam with figures of 8-1-21-4 failed to get the Man of the Match. It will remain as a mystery on why Tamim Iqbal got the Man of the Match award instead despite contributing so little in comparison to Shafiul Islam’s match winning efforts.