7 November 2008
A fiery display of pace bowling by Dale Steyn rattled Bangladesh's hope of securing ODI victory against South Africa as the hosts comfortably defeated Bangladesh by 61 runs in the first ODI in Potchefstroom today. Steyn bagged career best 4 for 16 runs from 8 overs as Bangladesh were bundled out for 222 in 44.2 overs chasing an improbable victory target of 284 in 50 overs.
Johan Botha, stand in skipper of South Africa won the toss and made no hesitation to bat first on a placid Senwes Park wicket. South Africa started positively with makeshift opening pair Hashim Amla and Justin Ontong and looked to score beyond 300 runs, but Bangladesh came back strongly after removing the pair in consecutive overs.
The match swung both ways during the South African innings as Bangladesh kept coming back whenever Proteas batsmen gained the initiative. However, a lower order power hitting propelled South Africa to 283 for 8 as 62 runs came from the last 5 overs.
Bangladesh started the chase in a familiar fashion as Steyn struck twice inside 5 overs to remove Imrul Kayes and out-of-form Zunaed Siddique. Bangladesh skipper Mohammad Ashraful joined Tamim Iqbal and played some delightful shots to steady Bangladesh innings. The promising partnership ended when Tamim Iqbal was run out on 73 after a misunderstanding with his skipper.
Mushfiqur soon followed Tamim but Ashraful found a reliable partner in Shakib Al Hasan and the pair shared a 92 run partnership and kept Bangladesh well within the run chase. However, the return of Steyn swung the momentum completely to South Africa as he picked Ashraful in the very first ball of his second spell. Ashraful scored match highest 73 runs from 78 deliveries before edging Steyn to Boucher on 35th over.
Shakib Al Hasan and Naeem Islam fought hard but could only reduce the margin of the defeat as Bangladesh fell 61 run short before getting all out in 44.2 overs.
The two sides will meet again on Sunday at Willomoore Park in Benoni on Sunday.