Bangladesh cricket suffered a jolt as they were blanked in the three-match T20 series by Afghanistan. Not only is the result difficult to digest for an established cricketing nation, the one-run loss in the final match in Dehradun points to a growing inability of Bangladesh to close out matches.
Afghanistan star leg-spinner Rashid Khan was at it again as the Tigers fell short by one run while chasing 146 for victory in Dehradun on Thursday.
Here we look at three prominent instances when Bangladesh fell short of a target in T20 cricket by the smallest of margins.
Lost to Sri Lanka by two runs, Chittagong (Feb 12, 2014)
Bangladesh had a great opportunity to defeat a strong Sri Lanka outfit that had Kumar Sangakkara and Lasith Malinga at home.
Sri Lanka posted 168 for seven in the first innings. Bangladesh made a valiant attempt to reach the target.
The hosts needed 17 in the final over bowled by Thisara Perera, with the hopes pretty much dashed. However, Anamul Haque hit three boundaries as the equation came down to three runs from the final ball for victory and two for a tie.
Anamul received a nice thigh high full toss but all he could do is spoon the ball back to the bowler, resulting in a two-run defeat.
Lost to India by one run, Bengaluru (Mar 23, 2016)
One of the most painful moments in Bangladesh cricket history. Bangladesh were in control for 39 overs of the World T20 match against India in Bengaluru. They needed 11 from the final over and after Mushfiqur Rahim hit two successive boundaries, required two runs from three balls.
Then came the meltdown as first Rahim and then Mahmudullah hit the bowler – Hardik Pandya – to midwicket to get caught before a failed attempt to run a bye from the final ball resulted in a one-run defeat.
While Dhoni’s lightning quick dash to the stumps to affect the run out off the final ball remains one of the highlights of the tournament, the fact remains it was Bangladesh who lost the game they had in their grasp.
Lost to Afghanistan by one run, Dehradun (June 7, 2018)
The three match T20 series against Afghanistan in Dehradun, India, was always going to be tricky as the Afghans are placed higher in the rankings table. The first two games resulted in comprehensive defeats for Bangladesh which meant the final match was all about pride.
Bangladesh were chasing 146 for victory and Rahim (46) once again anchored the chase. But with just nine needed from the final over – bowled by Rashid – Bangladesh fluffed their lines. Rashid got Rahim out of the first ball of the over and with four needed from the final delivery, kept the scoring down to two to secure a one-run victory.
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