Bangladesh go 2-0 up despite Latham heroics
Tom Latham’s hard-fought 65* went in vain as Bangladesh held their nerve in a last-over thriller to secure a four-run win in the second T20I, going 2-0 up in the five-match series.
Chasing 142, the Blackcaps got off to another shaky start, losing their openers within four overs. The early introduction of Shakib Al Hasan in the attack helped Bangladesh secure the wicket of Rachin Ravindra, who was bowled for 10. Tom Blundell followed suit, stumped off Mahedi Hasan in the next over for 6.
Unlike the first T20I in which the visitors folded for 60, this time skipper Tom Latham along with Will Young stabilised the innings. The duo put a 43-run partnership that pushed New Zealand past 60. It was eventually broken by Shakib as Young edged one to Saifuddin at short third man at the end of the 11th over.
Latham, though, led by example. Along with the next man in, Colin de Grandhomme (8), he helped add another 24 runs for the fourth wicket. He brought up a fine half-century but received little support from the other end. The Bangladesh bowlers bowled well at death bringing the equation to 20 off the final six balls.
Mustafizur gave no boundaries in the first four balls as New Zealand squeezed seven runs. Drama ensued when Latham struck a four off the next ball, a beamer that was given a no-ball by the umpire. In the end, Mustafizur did well to give only three runs off the next two balls, securing a four-run victory for his team.
Earlier, the decision to bat in the second T20I by Bangladesh was validated after a steady start. Their openers Liton Das and Mohammad Naim saw off the Powerplay with ease, batting cautiously for most part but taking full advantage of the loose deliveries to capitalise. They brought up their half-century stand in the ninth over and looked good to add more.
However, New Zealand had other plans. Ravindra’s second over shifted the momentum. After being hit for a six on the first ball, Ravindra bowled shortish ball that turned away as Liton looked to work it around leg. He ended up getting an inside-edge onto his stumps. One followed two as Mushfiqur Rahim was stumped on the very next delivery after the turn beat him when he attempted to push forward.
Shakib’s stay at the crease did not last for long either as Cole McConchie removed him in the next over with debutant Ben Sears taking a good catch running in from long-off.
Meanwhile, Naim partnered with Mahmud Ullah to keep the scorecard ticking. Naim welcomed Spears with consecutive boundaries in the 12th over, taking Bangladesh past 80. The partnership lasted until Ravindra picked up his third wicket getting the opener out for 39 in the 16th over.
Mahmudullah (37*), however, stuck to the plan and milked easy runs off the final overs to help Bangladesh to a competitive score of 141/6.
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