11 March 2012
A brilliant all-round display from Shakib Al Hasan was not enough to prevent a 21 run loss against Pakistan as Bangladesh lost last 5 wickets for 17 runs in the opening match of the Micromax Asia Cup 2012 at Sher E Bangla Stadium in Dhaka today. Bangladesh needed 39 runs from 39 balls with 5 wickets in hand, but after the departure of Nasir Hossain through a casual stroke, Bangladesh tail made a mess of the easy victory target by playing extravagant shots and ended up losing the match with 1.5 overs to spare.
Bangladesh opted to bowl first after winning the toss and did reasonably well to restrict Pakistan to 262 for 8 in 50 overs. However, at one point Pakistan was struggling at 198 for 7 in the 42nd over of the match, but a 25 ball 39 from tail-ender Umar Gull pushed the total to a competitive 262. Shahadat Hossain was the most successful Bangladesh bowler with 3 wickets for 53 while Shakib bagged 2 wickets for 41 runs.
In reply, Bangladesh started brightly with a new opening pair of Nazim Uddin and Tamim Iqbal who shared a 45 run partnership before Nazim slashed a Cheema delivery to Umar Gul at thirdman. Bangladesh lost their way in the middle overs as a host of wickets including that of Tamim Iqbal fell in the 29th over leaving Bangladesh on 135 for 5.
At this point, all-rounder Nasir Hossain joined former skipper Shakib Al Hasan at the crease, and the pair rescued Bangladesh through a well paced 89 run partnership. Just when Bangladesh edged ahead of Pakistan and was in complete control of the match, the wicket of Nasir in the 44th over completely changed the scenario and Bangladesh ended up losing a match that should have been comfortably won by them.
Bangladesh next play India on 16 March at the same venue.