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Thursday, October 28, 2021

Nasum takes 4-19 as Bangladesh stun Australia in first T20


IMAGE: Bangladesh’s players celebrate after clinching victory over Australia in the first T20 in Dhaka on Tuesday. Photograph: Mohammad Ponir Hossain / Reuters

Left-arm spinner Nasum Ahmed bagged a career-best 4 for 19 to help Bangladesh defended a meagre 131 for 7 and beat Australia by 23 runs in the first Twenty20 International in Dhaka on Tuesday.

Left-arm pacers Mustafizur Rahman and Shoriful Islam took two wickets each and Shakib Al Hasan, another left-arm spinner, and off-spinner Mahedi Hasan also chipped in one each as Australia were dismissed for 108 in 20 overs. It was their lowest total against Bangladesh in the shortest format, and Bangladesh’s first victory against Australia in five encounters.

Mitchell Marsh, who struck three half-centuries in five matches against the West Indies, was the only Australian to put up a fight, scoring a run-a-ball 45 before being sixth man out.

The combination of Nasum, Shakib and Mahedi reduced Australia to 11-3 in the third over.

Mahedi broke through with the first ball to dismiss Alex Carey, Nasum got Josh Philippe stumped for 9, and Shakib accounted for Moises Henriques before Marsh got going.

With Shakib and Mahedi denying Australia a flow of runs, Nasum ripped through the middle order with superb spin bowling.

Marsh kept the visitors’ hopes alive with calculated aggression, and his confidence grew after hitting Shakib for six. He was undone in Nasum’s last over when he went for a slog-sweep, and Australia’s chances effectively went with him.

Asked to bat first, Shakib top-scored for Bangladesh with 36 off 33, and opener Mohammad Naim struck a 29-ball 30, clobbering two fours and as many sixes. Afif Hossain added an unbeaten 23 off 16.

Naim flicked Australia speedster Mitchell Starc for a six over midwicket with a cracking shot in the second ball of the innings.

Starc’s new ball partner, Josh Hazlewood, broke through with the wicket of Soumya Sarkar on 2, and Naim was removed by leg spinner Adam Zampa.

Shakib and captain Mahmudullah played with caution but failed to rotate the scoreboard rapidly.

Hazlewood (3-24) broke the partnership, dismissing Mahmudullah for 20 with a knuckle ball.

Hazlewood also took the crucial wicket of Shakib when he appeared set to pace the scoreboard.

Starc got a couple of tail-enders but Afif Hossain held up one end to help the side go past 130.

The second match is on Wednesday.

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