ICC World Twenty20 qualifying, highlights: Bangladesh beat Afghanistan by 9 wickets
ICC World Twenty20 hosts Bangladesh, who will be boosted by the return of opener Tamim Iqbal and pacer Mashrafe Mortaza, will look to avenge their Asia Cup defeat when they play Afghanistan in the first qualifying match of the tournament.
17:35 (IST): So, wicketkeeper-batsman Anamul Haque (44 off 33 balls) has produced another good innings for Bangladesh. They had an easy target of 73 to chase after their spinners completely dismantled the Afghanistan top-order. However, Anamul's performance will not go unnoticed as the good run-rate might actually help Bangladesh qualify for the main matches of the ICC World Twenty20 tournament. Shakib Al Hasan earlier impressed with his 3 wickets for 8 runs with the ball.
17:33 (IST): Hosts Bangladesh (78-1 in 12 overs) beat Afghanistan (72) by 9 wickets in the 1st match of the ICC World Twenty20 tournament. Anamul Haque seals it for Bangladesh in style with a six.
17:30 (IST): Biggest over of the innings! Three fours in this over from Anamul Haque as Bangladesh move closer to their 73-run target. BAN 71/1 after 11 overs.
17:11 (IST): WICKET! Tamim Iqbal lbw b Samiullah Shenwari 21. BAN 45/1 after 7.4 overs. 28 required off 74 balls now.
17:04 (IST): SIX! Anamul Haque uses the flight from Afghan skipper Mohammad Nabi to his advantage to send it over long-on for a six! BAN 23/0 after 5.
16:33 (IST): So, this has not quite turned out to be a big challenge for Bangladesh contrary to what was being expected. Led by the spinners, they have reduced Afghanistan for just 72 in 17.1 overs and their batsmen should chase this particular target easily. They will need to win more matches to qualify for the main tournament though, which will start from March 21. The home crowd will be desperate to see their team do well.
16:24 (IST): WICKET! Afghanistan's innings comes to an end. Shapoor Zadran b Shakib Al Hasan 1. AFG make 72 (17.1 overs) after being put in to bat first.
16:18 (IST): WICKET! Nine down now. Dawlat Zadran c Mahmudullah b Farhad Reza 1. Afghanistan in big trouble at 71/9 after 16.2 overs.
16:10 (IST): WICKET! Another one gone! Shafiqullah c Mushfiqur Rahim b Mahmudullah 16. Afghanistan 69/8 now after 14.1 overs.
16:07 (IST): WICKET! Samiullah Shenwari lbw b Abdur Razzak. Afghanistan struggling at 69/7 after 14 overs.
16:02 (IST): WICKET! Karim Sadiq run out 10. A late decision to take a second run has cost him. Afghanistan 58/6 after 12 overs.
15:53 (IST): WICKET! Mohammad Nabi lbw b Abdur Razzak 3. The captain is gone. Afghanistan struggling at 49/5 after 9.3 overs.
15:42 (IST): WICKET! Nawroz Mangal run out 0. A direct hit from Sabbir Rahman at short fine leg does the trick. AFG 36/4 after 6.1 overs.
15:37 (IST): WICKET! N Tarakai c Nasir Hossain b Shakib Al Hasan 0. Afghanistan 36/3 after 5.3 overs. Shakib on a hat-trick.
15:35 (IST): WICKET! Gulbadin Naib c Sabbir Rahman b Shakib Al Hasan 21. AFG 36/2 after 5.2 overs. A dropped catch followed by a wicket.
15:30 (IST): FREE HIT! Al-Amin Hossain bowls a front foot no-ball to bring up the first free hit of the match. Gulbadin Naib says thank you with a boundary. (AFG 23/1 after 4.1 overs)
15:20 (IST): SIX! Gulbadin Naib thwacks Al-Amin Hossain towards mid-on for the first six of the match. (AFG 8/1 after 1.3 overs)
15:10 (IST): WICKET! Mashrafe Mortaza strikes! Mohammad Shahzad (0) is gone off the first ball. He was trying to clear the mid-off boundary for a six but it was caught perfectly at cover by Mahmudullah. Afghanistan 0/1 after 0.1 overs. What a dream start for Bangladesh!
Tamim Iqbal, Anamul Haque, Shakib Al Hasan, Mushfiqur Rahim, Sabbir Rahman, Nasir Hossain, Mahmudullah, Farhad Reza, Mashrafe Mortaza, Al-Amin Hossain, Abdur Razzak
Mohammad Shahzad, Nawroz Mangal, Karim Sadiq, Shafiqullah, Mohammad Nabi, Gulbadin Naib, Samiullah Shenwari, Dawlat Zadran, Shapoor Zadran, Aftab Alam, Najeeb Tarakai
14:37 (IST): Bangladesh captain Mushfiqur Rahim wins the toss and elects to field first vs Afghanistan. Mushfiqur says there is nothing wrong with the wicket and one never knows what will be a good total at Mirpur. Afghanistan captain Mohammad Nabi says his team will do their best to put a big total and put pressure on the opposition.
Hosts Bangladesh take on Afghanistan in the first qualifying match of the ICC World Twenty20 tournament in Mirpur on Sunday. After ending their Asia Cup campaign with four straight defeats, Bangladesh will look to come back stronger in the tournament.
After a lot of speculation over security concern due to political unrest in the country, Bangladesh held on as the hosts for the ICC event.
Premier batsman Tamim Iqbal along with off-spinner Sohag Gazi and pacer Mashrafe Mortaza will be back to bolster Bangladesh for the World Twenty20. A lot will also rest on the shoulders of skipper Mushfiqur Rahim and all-rounder Shakib-al-Hasan, who can make their experience count.
The tournament, which runs until April 6, will be played under heavy security after election violence at the turn of the year raised fears that Bangladesh's biggest sporting event could be moved elsewhere.
Bangladesh, which co-hosted the 2011 50-over World Cup with India and Sri Lanka, will stage matches in the capital Dhaka, Chittagong and Sylhet. But plans to host games in the holiday resort of Cox's Bazaar were ruled out after building work on a new stadium fell behind schedule.
Organisers will be praying that Bangladesh defeat the dangerous Afghanistan in Sunday's tournament opener in Dhaka because an early exit for the hosts could seriously affect interest in the tournament.
Afghanistan, who will play their third World T20 and have also qualified for a maiden appearance in the 50-over World Cup next year, stunned the hosts in recently concluded Asia Cup.
No wonder Bangladesh's premier all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan urged fans to tone down expectations from the home team. "Everyone must take results sportingly," he said. "Too much expectation puts undue pressure on us."
Bangladesh: Mushfqur Rahim (captain/wicketkeeper), Tamim Iqbal, Anamul Haque (wicketkeeper), Mominul Haque, Shakib Al Hasan, Nasir Hossain, Mahmudullah Riad, Shamsur Rahman, Abdur Razzak, Sohag Gazi, Rubel Hossain, Mashrafe Morataza, Al-Amin Hossain, Sabbir Rahman, Farhad Reza.
Afghanistan: Mohammad Nabi (captain), Karim Sadiq, Mohammad Shahzad (wicketkeeper), Asghar Stanikzai, Nawroz Mangal, Samiullah Shenwari, Najibullah Zadran, Mirwais Ashraf, Shapoor Zadran, Gulbadin Naib, Najeeb Tarakai, Dawlat Zadran , Aftab Alam, Hamza Hotak, Shafiqullah.