Shakib, Tamim help Bangladesh level series

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Tamim Iqbal’s half-century and Shakib Al Hasan’s all-round performance highlighted Bangladesh’s series-levelling effort at Lauderhill, Florida on Saturday (August 4) as they secured a 12-run victory in the second T20I. A 90-run partnership for the fourth wicket off 50 deliveries between Tamim and Shakib set up Bangladesh’s total of 171 for 5. In reply, Windies were restricted to 159 for 9, with Mustafizur Rahman and Nazmul Islam bagging three wickets apiece, while Shakib got two.
Windies suffered an early setback in the chase as Evin Lewis was trapped in front by Mustafizur in the second over and cost his team a review in the process. Having earlier had an expensive outing with the ball, Andre Russell tried to make amends with his positive batting while Andre Fletcher also found the boundaries regularly. Russell struck Mustafizur for a six and a four in the fourth over before top-edging a pull to depart for 17. Marlon Samuels hit the straps straightaway, ending Mustafizur’s successful over with a four and a six. However, a casual flick resulted in his downfall, giving Shakib a wicket in his first over.
More trouble was in store for Windies as Denesh Ramdin became the next to depart, out leg-before to Rubel Hossain with Bangladesh using the DRS to good effect. While Windies managed 52 in the powerplay, there was a drought of boundaries for more than five overs before Fletcher sent a short delivery from Nazmul Islam over the long-on fence. Meanwhile, Rovman Powell’s first four was off an inside edge off Abu Hider, who had replaced Mehidy Hasan for this game, and his next came off an under edge. But he hung around with Fletcher as the fifth wicket pair went about repairing the innings with a positive half-century stand.
Having brought down the equation to 72 off the last six overs, Windies were back in the hunt but the onus was on Fletcher and Powell to take them closer. The former struck a six off Nazmul to further relive the pressure before outside-edging a heave to depart for 43. Carlos Brathwaite started with a four and a six but the Windies captain also didn’t last the distance, with his Bangladesh counterpart accounting for the dismissal to finish with fine figures of 2 for 19.
While Powell fell to Mustafizur a short while later, Bangladesh were given some nervous moments as Ashley Nurse struck meaty blows off the left-arm seamer to bring down the equation to 15 off the final over. However, Nazmul’s tight over, in which he gave away only two runs and picked up two wickets, ensured Bangladesh stayed alive in the series.
Earlier, on a greyish wicket that was expected to assist the spinners, Windies opted to bowl and operated with Samuel Badree and Nurse in tandem, with the latter picking up two wickets to dent Bangladesh. While Tamim dealt in boundaries regularly, even clearing the fence with a neatly executed strike over extra cover off Badree, the lack timing caused the downfall of Liton Das and Mushfiqur Rahim at the other end. Das tried to make room but couldn’t go past mid off while Rahim mis-hit a reverse sweep to give Nurse wickets in successive overs.
The early wickets meant that Bangladesh didn’t have a profitable powerplay, managing only 35 runs. The pressure to up the ante got the better of Soumya Sarkar, who despite scoring six and a four, had plenty of dot deliveries against his name, and fell in his attempt to hit a Keemo Paul delivery over the top. The arrival of Shakib brought some positivity to Bangladesh’s innings as the skipper struck a flurry of boundaries to up the ante. Unlike the other batsmen who fell before, Shakib didn’t look to go hard at the ball and paid rich dividends for his approach as he helped raise a half-century stand to take Bangladesh past the 100-run mark in the 14th over.
Meanwhile, Tamim was put down by Powell at mid off and he made Windies pay by bringing up a half-century before shifting to a higher gear. Russell bore the brunt of his attack, being hit for three sixes and a four in the 16th over before the fireworks came to an end when Tamim was caught in the deep. But it was a job well done as the 22-run over provided the launchpad for a strong finish. Bangladesh added 33 more in the last four overs, with Shakib crossing fifty as the Asian side finished with just above 170, that proved to be sufficient in the end.
Brief scores: Bangladesh 171/5 in 20 overs (Tamim Iqbal 74, Shakib Al Hasan 60; Ashley Nurse 2-25, Keemo Paul 2-39) beat Windies 159/9 in 20 overs (Rovman Powell 43, Andre Fletcher 43; Nazmul Islam 3-28, Mustafizur Rahman 3-50) by 12 runs.