4th PRAN RFL T20 Triangular played at Harare Sports Club: Bangladesh 153 for 4 (Nasir 41*) beat Zimbabwe 149 for 8 (Masakadza 56, Mortaza 2-28) by six wickets.
A lack luster performance with both bat and ball saw Bangladesh pick up their first two points of the tournament when they bruised to a six wicket win over Zimbabwe in the fourth match of the ongoing Pran RFL T20 triangular series at Harare sports club on Thursday 21 June.
Brendan Taylor called correctly for the third time in a row at the toss and once again decided to bat.
The Tigers would have been hoping to get an early break through as they no doubt would have paid close attention to the fantastic opening stand Hamilton Masakadza and Vusi Sibanda had against South Africa in Zimbabwe's 29 run win over South Africa in the previous match. The Tigers hopes soon became a reality when a terrible mix up between Hamilton Masakadza and Vusi Sibanda, saw Sibanda run out for 12 with the total on 22.
Brendan Taylor then tried to up the tempo but chanced his arm once to many as he pulled the gentle medium pace of Ziaur Rahman straite down Mahmudullah's throat at deep mid wicket for 27 off just 13 balls with three fours and two sixes. Taylor would have been deeply disappointed as he had already taken 14 runs off the over which included two consecutive sixes before trying to hit a third.
Stuart Matsikenyeri and Masakadza then restored the situation in their fourth wicket partnership of 51, but when Matsikenyeri was well caught by Mashrafe Mortaza on the long on boundary for a breezy 27, the innings lost momentum and even though Masakadza reached his third successive half centurie, the big man's innings lacked the usual flare and aggression and when edged Mortaza to Mushfiqur Rahim for56 off 54 deliveries, it was up to the lower order to try and get the home side to a total of respectability. But instead the innings fell away and Zimbabwe ended on a disappointing total of 149 for the loss of eight wickets from their 20 overs. Mashrafe Mortaz finished with figures of 2-28 from his four overs while Abdur Razzak was unlucky not to get a wicket but still ended with tidy figures of 0-20 from his four overs.
Mohammad Ashraful then gave Zimbabwe a glimmer of hope when he tried to scoop Kyle Jarvis down to fine leg but instead lost his wicket by doing so to leave the Tigers in a spot of trouble at 25 for one. And when the dangerous and highly talented Tamim Iqbal was run out trying to take a quick single to Stuart Matsikinyere for just 13, the crowds burst in to song as they anticipated another home side win which would have booked Zimbabwe's place in Sunday's final.
But however, captain Mushfiqur Rahim steadied the ship as he and Nasir Hossain added 47 for the third wicket before a brilliant bit of atheleticism when he ran in from the boundary, picked up and threw the ball in one live movement and hit the stumps to dismiss Rahim for 31.
But Hossain who made his international debut against Zimbabwe in August last year, showed his true class and potential as he stroked an unbeaten 41 off 31 balls to guide his team to a comfortable six wicket win along side his vice captain Mahmudullah who finished with an unbeaten 29 off 14 balls with three fours and a six as the Tigers reached the target in 17-3 overs.
Despite the win, Bangladesh are still at the bottom of the table due to their run rate. The Tigers play their final round Robin match when they play South Africa on Friday.