Bangladesh Fight Hard but Steve Smith’s Australia Win by 3 Wickets
Australia’s first victory of the World T20.
Bangladesh: 156 for 5 in 20 overs (Mahmudullah 49 not out; Adam Zampa 3/23) lost to Australia: 157 for 7 in 18.3 overs (Usman Khawaja 58; Shakib Al Hasan 3/27, Mustafizur Rahman 2/30) by 3 wickets.
Australia survived a middle-order collapse to beat Bangladesh by three wickets in a World Twenty20 Super 10 match on Monday to get their campaign up and running.
Bangladesh were helped to a modest 156 for five by Mahmudullah’s unbeaten 49 before opener Usman Khawaja struck 58 off 45 balls as Australia won with nine deliveries to spare.
After Bangladesh lost the toss and scored 156-5 at Chinnaswamy Stadium, Australia reached 157-7 in 18.3 overs for its first win in Group 2.
“We made it difficult at the end and Bangladesh bowled quite well in the middle overs,” Australia captain Steven Smith said. “We’ve had a bit of travel, but it’s not an excuse.”
Openers Usman Khawaja and Shane Watson made a confident start with 62 in 7.2 overs for the first wicket. But from 95-1, the Australians began losing wickets at regular intervals — Shakib Al Hasan doing the bulk of the damage with 3-27 and Mustafizur Rahman picking up 2-30.
Khawaja seemed like he could do nothing wrong during his 58 from 45 balls that was laced with seven fours and a six. In contrast, once the opening pair had departed at 115-3, Smith (14), David Warner (17), Mitchell Marsh (6) and John Hastings (3) failed to get going.
But for Glenn Maxwell, who scored a 15-ball 26 with the help of two fours and a pair of sixes, the result could easily have been different.
Australia restricted Bangladesh to a modest 156-5 despite a late flurry by their opponents.
Australia skipper Steven Smith won the toss at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium and Shane Watson too out opener Soumya Sarkar in the second over to leave their opponents at 2-1.
Leg-spinner Adam Zampa was the pick of the Australian bowlers, taking three wickets in his allotted four overs, including Sarkar’s partner Mohammad Mithun (22), who was promoted up the order in place of the ill Tamim Iqbal.
Zampa struck again to remove Shuvagata Hom (13) and got the key wicket of Shakib Al Hasan (33), who had notched up a patient 33 of 25 balls and was just starting to open up.
Bangladesh found boundaries hard to come by until Mamadullah got to the crease to notch a quickfire 49 and add a bit of gloss to the scoreboard.
Aided by Mushfiqur Rahim’s 15 off 11 deliveries, Mamadullah struck seven boundaries to add 50 runs in 26 balls for the sixth wicket and take his team to a competitive total.
Bangladesh, missing suspended paceman Taskin Ahmed and left-arm spinner Arafat Sunny, brought Saqlain Sajib and Hom into the starting XI with Mustafizur Rahman replacing Iqbal.
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