All-rounder Ravindra Jadeja made a superb return to limited overs cricket, helping India dismiss Bangladesh for 173 after Rohit Sharma opted to chase at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium. India then cruised to victory in 36.2 overs courtesy Rohit, who struck an unbeaten 83 off 104 balls, his second consecutive fifty-plus score of the tournament. He was all class in his delightful innings that comprised five fours and three huge sixes on the leg-side. Rohit and MS Dhoni (33 off 37) shared a 64-run stand before the former India captain gave his wicket away towards the end.
India play their next Super Four game against Pakistan on Sunday. India were hardly trouble in the chase after Rohit and Shikhar Dhawan (40 off 47) provided a solid start with a 61-run stand. Dhawan, in like the game against Pakistan, looked in good touch but was not able to play a long innings. Rohit changed gears after Dhawan's departure. He brought his 36th ODI fifty with a towering hit off Shakib Al Hasan over deep mid-wicket.
The captain's form augurs well for India going forward into the competition. Dhoni too got much needed time in the middle, having not batted against Pakistan on Wednesday. The former captain had failed to open his account against Hong Kong in the team's tournament opener. Dhoni wanted to finish off the game with a boundary but could only find the fielder at sweeper cover.
Earlier, Jadeja, playing his first ODI since July 2017, broke the backbone of Bangladesh batting with his accurate left-arm spin and ended with impressive figures of four for 29 in 10 overs. Bangladesh batsmen faltered again, having come a cropper in the run chase against Afghanistan on Thursday night. The seasoned pace duo of Bhuvneshwar Kumar (3/32) and Jasprit Bumrah (3/37) too made life tough for the opposition. The saving grace for Bangladesh was the 66-run stand for the eighth wicket between Mehidy Hasan Miraz (42 off 50) and captain Mashrafe Mortaza (26 off 32) before the team was all out in 49.1 overs.
Bangladesh, who lost to Afghanistan less than 24 hours ago and had to take the 90-minute journey from Abu Dhabi to Dubai, paid the price for reckless batting.
They lost their openers Liton Das (7) and Nazmul Hossain Shanto (7) by the sixth over. From 15 for two, the experienced pairing of Shakib (21) and Mushfuqir Rahim had a task of rebuilding the innings but the former fell to a loose shot off Jadeja. The star Bangladesh all-rounder, having hit Jadeja for two boundaries in the 10th over, went for another one but his sweep went straight into the hands of Dhawan at square leg.
Jadeja, who was playing Vijay Hazare Trophy in Delhi but got a last-minute call-up to join the national team here in the wake of injuries to Hardik Pandya, Axar Patel and Shardul Thakur, grabbed the opportunity with both hands.
He removed Mohammad Mithun in typical fashion for his second wicket, darting the ball into the middle stump to trap him in front of the stumps, reducing Bangladesh to 60 for four in the 16th over. In his next over, the wily spinner sent back Rahim, leaving Bangladesh in deep trouble. Mahmudullah (25) and Mossadek Hossain (12) batted sensibly, sharing a 36-run stand for the sixth wicket. They could have added a lot more if Mahmudullah had not got a rough call from the umpire in the 33rd over. He was adjudged leg before wicket off Bhuvneshwar but replays showed he got bat on ball before it hit his pads. Bangladesh could not review the questionable call as they had already used up their review.
Much to their relief, Mortaza and Miraz stitched a much-needed partnership to give their bowlers something to bowl at. Mortaza, who is well past his prime, and Miraz entertained the crowd with some clean hitting. The skipper smashed two straight sixes off Bhuvneshwar in the 47th over before getting caught at short fine leg.
(With PTI Inputs)