Day-3 of the third warm-up match turned out to be a good one for the Bangladeshis. The bowlers saved the team from further embarrasment. NTCM were all out for 136 in just under 60 overs against the Bangladeshi bowling.
Resuming on their overnight score of 32/3, KE Vowles and AN Williams continued the good work which they had done yesterday. AN Willians made a fighting 86 ball 24 and KE Vowles top-scored for the hosts as he made 34. These 2 bastsmen put up a fighting partnership of 58 to take the hosts to 63/3. The Bangladeshi captain, Khaled Mahmud then struck to dismiss KE Vowles for 34 and Tapash Baisya then followed him to dismiss AN Williams to bring Bangladesh back into the game.
KJ Skewes and Nathan Hauritz gave a bit of fight until Mohammed Ashraful removed both of them quickly with his off-spin bowling dismissing both the batsmen on either side of lunch. NTCM at this stage were reeling at 93/7. After this, DL Treumer, the wicket-keeper of the NTCM side along with AC Dent, led a fightback for the hosts and frustrated the Bangladeshi bowling for an hour to make some sort of a recovery to take their team to 135/7.
The Bangladeshi bowlers then fought back taking the last 3 wickets for just 1 run to have the hosts all out for 136 conceding a lead of 186 and giving themselves a target of 187 to win. For Bangladesh, Tapash Baisya was the pick of the bowlers as he took 3/19 off his 10.4 overs. Monjural Islam and Mohammed Ashraful each took 2 wickets and Mashrafe-bin-Mortaza, Khaled Mahmud and Mohammed Rafique chipped in with a wicket each. The batsmen then continued the good work. Javed Omar Belim hit a patient 44 off 145 balls(1x4) and he shared useful partnerships with Hannan Sarkar and Habibul Bashar. Both these batsmen hit 12s. Mohammad Ashraful then gave Golla some support till the end of the day to take Bangladesh off to 89/2 before a small batting collapse triggered by A McAdam, who dismissed both the set batsmen in quick succession to have Bangladesh ending the day at 90/4, still 97 runs away from a sensational win. Khaled Mashud Pilot came in as a night watchmen and is still not out on 0 off 12 balls.
For tommorow, with 97 runs still to make, one can only hope that the batsmen dont lose their cool and play patiently and not go for rash shots. Pilot and Kapali are going to be the important batsmen for Bangladesh.
Two wins in consecutive matches in Australia would be a major achievement for the cricketing minnows and it will be a good confidence booster for the upcoming test matches against Australia. Who knows, Bangladesh might win a test match against Australia, after all stranger things have happened in cricket. Hopefully, the Bangladeshi players should be able to show their strength to the world, well they never have done it before. All I can say is Go Bangladesh, win this one !