Soumya, Mustafizur propel Bangladesh to 48-run win against Zimbabwe in T20 opener

  • Sports Correspondent,
    Published: 2020-03-09 21:26:24 BdST

A swashbuckling half-century by Soumya Sarkar and three wickets each from Mustafizur Rahman have guided Bangladesh to a resounding 48-run victory against Zimbabwe in the opening T20I.

Chasing 201 for a win, the visitors were bundled out for 152 with leg spinner Aminul Islam also chipping in with three wickets in Dhaka on Monday.

Earlier, opener Liton Das continued his rich vein of form from the ODIs to smash a quickfire 59 before a 62-run blitz, including 5 sixes, from Soumya propelled the Tigers to 200 runs -- their third highest score in the game's shortest format.

After their record-breaking 292-run opening stand in the final ODI against Zimbabwe, Liton and Tamim Iqbal again took the attack to Zimbabwe from the start after the Tigers were asked to bat first.

The pair racked up another record, this time Bangladesh's highest opening stand in T20Is, before Wesley Madhevere removed Tamim (41) with the Tigers cruising at 92 in the 11th over.

Part-time spinner Sikandar Raza then trapped Liton lbw with a googly as the Zimbabweans briefly put the brakes on the run rate. But their joy was shortlived as man-of-the-match Soumya, returning to the side after missing both the Tests and ODIs, fired Bangladesh into the ascendency with a career-best 62 not out off just 32 balls.

Bangladesh's bowlers pegged the visitors back early as Brendan Taylor woeful form with the bat continued as he fell to Shafiul Islam in the second over of the chase.

Craig Ervine too failed to deliver on his return to the side as he was trapped lbw by Mustrafizur for 8.

Madhevere was run out shortly afterwards as the Zimbabweans were left reeling from the loss of three wickets inside the first powerplay as they faced a steep required rate of almost 12.

The visitors never recovered from the early slump as the Tigers' bowlers picked up wickets at regular intervals to help Bangladesh to their biggest ever win against Zimbabwe in T20Is.