Bangladesh beat Sri Lanka by 45 runs to level T20i series

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DHAKA : It was befitting end to Mashrafe Mortaza’s illustrious career as team Bangladesh handed him a perfect swansong gift as tigers beat Sri Lanka to record a cakewalk 45 runs victory in the 2nd T20i of the two-match series held on Thursday at R Premadasa Stadium in Colombo.

Chasing a massive winning target of 177 runs set by Bangladesh, Sri Lanka found the chase stiff in the face of tight bowling attacks by the Tigers’ bowlers and finally all out for 131 in 18 overs.

Bangladesh skipper prior to this series announced that he would be retiring from t20 cricket and after bangladesh suffered a six-wicket defeat in the first match, one thought Sri Lanka will wrap up the series by thrashing Bangladesh also in the match yesterday.

But Tigers were in different frame of mind as they opted to bat first despite their dashing opener tamim Iqbal could not make the first XI due to injury.

Mashrafe as bold as ever decided to bat and his openers responded in a incredible manner as they put up a blistering platform to post 73 in 6.3 overs and they never looked back as despite mid-over brilliant bowling by Lankans and a extra ordinary hat-trick by Lasith Malinga by forced them to finished at 176 for 9 in their 20 overs, at one stage it looked Bangladesh will carry on their score beyond 200 mark.

Even the target of 177 looked very steep as world’s leading allrounder shakib al Hasan grab the first wicket and tigers never looked back and pace sensation Mustafizur Rahman was saving his best in Sri Lanka with an incredible spell to grab four scalps for 21 run while Shakib made sure that he hogged the headlines with 3 for 24 to forced the home side batsmen to make numerous mistakes.

The hosts stumbled early to chase the total as they lost five wickets inside five overs. The only highlight of Sri Lankan dilapidated innings was Kapugedera’s fighting 50 runs from 35 balls that contained five boundaries and one over boundary. Perera (27) and Tharaga (23) were the other notable scorers for Sri Lankan side.

Shakib was named the player of the match for his impressive allround performance in the match.

In his immediate reaction Shakib said, “I thought it was a very good wicket and upfront we bowled really well. We took pace off the ball and took early wickets. We don’t play much T20s with the national team, there are areas to improve with the bat, ball, and even in the field. It has been a fantastic series for the team. The boys put their hands up and showed a lot of character. Mashrafe is very special, I can’t explain in words how important he was to his team. Obviously, he will playing a big role in the ODI team.

Earlier, Lasith Malinga claimed a hat-trick as Sri Lanka restricted Bangladesh to 176-9 from their allotted 20 overs. Malinga bowled Mushfiqur Rahim and Mashrafe Mortaza and trapped debutant Mehedi Hasan leg before wicket in his final over to complete the hat-trick and finish with 3-34, after Bangladesh captain Mashrafe Bin Mortaza won the toss in his farewell T20I match and elected to bat first against Sri Lanka.

Tigers took the ground for making the series draw bringing two changes in their best eleven. Imrul Kayes replaced opener Tamim Iqbal, who was sidelined due to back injury. Spin all-rounder Mehedi Hasan Miraz making his T20I debut replacing pace bowler Taskin Ahmed who played in the last game on Tuesday.

Upul Tharanga kept the same men combination to win the trophy, having 1-0 series lead with six wicket victory in the last match against Bangladesh.

Brief score:

Bangladesh innings – 176 for 9 in 20 overs, Shakib 38, Kayes 36, Soumya 34, Mushfiq 15, Malinga 3/34

Sri Lanka innings – 131 for all in 18 overs, Kapugedera 50 , Perera 27, Tharanga 23 Mustafizur 4/21 and Shakib 3/24

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