South Africa succumbed to a second consecutive defeat in the Cricket World Cup 2019 after they fell short off Bangladesh’s total of 330-6 by 21 runs.
Bangladesh registered their highest total in ODI’s and became the first Asian team to win a game in the 2019 edition of the tournament.
Shakib Al Hasan was adjudged as the man-of-the-match for his crucial 75(84) that helped Bangladesh to a massive total. The southpaw followed it up with a 1-50 with the ball while also completing an excellent tumbling catch.
Naturally, the all-rounder was delighted with the win and explained how playing for county outfit Worcestershire helped him.
“I think this is one of our top wins. We have had a few upsets before in World Cup, but this time we want to prove and the start can’t get any better. Before arriving here, we had the belief, we needed this start and we need to build on the momentum.
“I played two years for Worcestershire and I know the conditions here. We played the 2017 Champions trophy and we had a fair idea about how the wickets behave, knew it would be good for batting.
“Our confidence is really good at the moment, the next game here against New Zealand is a big game, they are a strong team and will come hard at us,” he concluded.
Bangladesh captain Mashrafe Mortaza was also delighted with a positive start to his team’s campaign. He credited opener Soumya Sarkar for laying the platform against South Africa with a brisk 42 (30).
“The first match always sets the tone. We have been positive, won in Ireland and the momentum helped us set the tone here. I have to give credit to Soumya for laying the platform. I knew it was a good wicket to bat on and we knew that we had to bowl in the right areas to get wickets..
“A big crowd was behind us, and we are expecting them to come back in our next match in the same way,” Morataza said.
It was the second consecutive defeat for the Proteas in the tournament and it came after they conceded a 300-plus total for the second game in a row.
Opting to bowl first on the same surface where they conceded 311 runs in the opener against England proved to be costly for South Africa with Bangladesh amassing a total of 330-6 on Sunday.
“Looking back, no,” du Plessis said after the loss when asked if he still would have elected to bowl first in hindsight.
“I wouldn’t have bowled first, but the thinking was, the surface was going to have more pace and bounce.
“Today didn’t go according to plan. Wasn’t ideal with Lungi (Ngidi) getting injured, but 330 was out of par. Not a great performance from us.”
With pacer Lungi Ngidi joining the treatment table after sustaining a hamstring injury, South Africa’s troubles are only mounting ahead of their next clash against India on June 5.
There could, however, be good news for the Proteas regarding the fitness status of veteran pacer Dale Steyn who has missed both of the side’s clashes so far with a shoulder injury.
“We came here with a fast bowling attack we wanted to have, not quite sure of Lungi’s hamstring injury, it can be a few days or a week off,” the South Africa skipper said on Ngidi’s injury status.
“Dale Steyn is bowling in the middle now, hopefully there’s some progress.,” he added.
Bangladesh prevailed by 21 runs in a tight contest in London as the Proteas fell to their second consecutive defeat in the tournament.
South Africa skipper Faf du Plessis’ decision to bat first after winning the toss didn’t pay dividends with the Proteas bowling attack conceding more than 300 runs for the second game in a row.
Led by half-centuries from the bats of Mushfiqur Rahim (78) and Shakib Al Hasan (75), Bangladesh posted 330-6.
Opener Soumya Sarkar gave Bangladesh a blazing start with a 30-ball 42 before Shakib and Mushfiqur consolidated the advantage with a record third-wicket stand worth 142.
Leg-spinner Imran Tahir brought South Africa back into the game with two wickets but Mahmudullah (46) and Mossadek Hossain (26) ensured that Bangladesh ended their innings with a bang.
In response, South Africa lost wickets at regular intervals as they attempted a record World Cup chase but it proved to be too tall an order in the end as they finished on 308-9.
Openers Quinton de Kock (23) and Aiden Markram (45) both got good starts but were unable to kick on. Skipper du Plessis registered a fine fifty (62) before his innings was ended by the excellent Mehidy Hasan with Bangladesh’s spinner’s thriving.
Rassie van der Dussen (41) and JP Duminy (45) raised South Africa’s hopes with a threatening stand but Bangladesh’s bowlers bounced back at the death in style with a flurry of wickets.
Experienced core to the fore for Bangladesh
Bangladesh came into the World Cup with an experienced core and it proved to be the difference in their fine win over the Proteas.
With the bat, Mushfiqur and Shakib set up an excellent platform with a 142-run stand. Both batsmen registered fifties on the day before Mahmudullah provided the finishing flourish in the death overs.
The 33-year-old struck a 33-ball 46 as Bangladesh scored 54 runs off the final four overs of the innings. Those late runs proved to be crucial in the end given the game’s tight margins.
Skipper Mashrafe Mortaza and stalwart Tamim Iqbal did not have the best of the days but their experience should also show through at some stage. With five players who have all played a minimum of 150 ODIs, the Tigers are no longer the pushovers they once were and the Proteas will definitely not be their last big scalp in the tournament.
Shakib Al Hasan
The Bangladesh star had reclaimed the No1 ICC ranking for all-rounders coming into the World Cup and he justified that tag with an accomplished display with both bat and ball.
He first ensured that Bangladesh made the most of a blistering start provided by opener Sarkar with a 142-run stand for the third wicket alongside Mushfiqur.
The southpaw struck one six and eight boundaries in his 75-run knock which came at almost run-a-ball and helped assert Bangladesh’s dominance in the middle overs with what was his 43rd ODI fifty.
He then followed it up with a super bowling display where he castled the well-set Markram while being highly economical in his 10-over spell (1-50).
In the process, Shakib became only the fifth all-rounder in ODI history to score at least 5,000 runs and claim 250 wickets and the fastest to do so – 199 matches.
Shakib Al Hasan became the fastest cricketer to reach 250 wickets and 5,000 runs in ODI cricket.@Sah75official - 199th match— Mohammad Isam (@Isam84) June 2, 2019
Abdul Razzaq 258, Shahid Afridi 273, Jacques Kallis 296 and Sanath Jayasuriya 304 matches respectively.
The 330-6 accumulated by Bangladesh’s batsmen is their highest ODI total in history. The excellent showing by Mashrafe Mortaza and his men is the best batting format in the 2019 World Cup so far as well and eclipses the 311-8 put up by England’s batsmen against South Africa in the tournament opener.
The previous highest ODI total by Bangladesh was the 329-6 they scored against Pakistan at Dhaka in 2015.