A clinical all-round performance by Bangladesh saw them taking a 1-0 lead in the series despite India managing to take it to the last over. Mushfiqur Rahim was at the forefront of the run-chase with a solid half-century after Soumya Sarkar and Mohammad Naim set up a base for the visitors.
After being put in to bat first on a slow surface, India were caught in a crossfire, and the batting order found it extremely difficult to cope with the conditions. Bangladesh stuffed their team with three off-spinners, and that worked against the hosts considering the Men in Blue's middle-order was filled with left-handed batsmen. Some lower-order pyrotechnics by Krunal Pandya and Washington Sundar took the score to a decent total of 148 runs but that was never going to be enough.
Bangladesh started poorly, losing the enigmatic Liton Das in the very first over itself, but after that, it was one-way traffic. They faltered, giving jitters in their trademark fashion, but that was short-lived. After Soumya Sarkar and Mohammed Naim’s solid partnership, Mushfiqur Rahim kept level-headedness to ensure Bangladesh cruised to victory. A terrible penultimate over by Khaleel Ahmed ended the hopes of the Indians as Bangladesh took a 1-0 lead in the series.
In hindsight, it was easy to state that Shreyas Iyer’s dismissal had a big role to play in India losing the plot. While the top and middle-order struggled to break the shackles, Iyer batted with the flow, and most of his hits were clean. However, the shot that sent him back to the hut was one that he failed to read properly but post his dismissal, the bug of powerplay moved to the middle-overs.
Highs and Lows
Fortune favours the brave. Mushfiqur Rahim has been at the receiving end of many trolls for that one over in Bangalore three years ago, and what a day he chose to bury the demons. Coming in at possibly the best batting conditions in the match, Rahim worked hard to get off the blocks quickly but as soon as he did, didn’t look back. Rahim was given a few lives but history remembers winners, and hardly the losers. It would be India that would be haunted by their own frailties. The cute little baby-faced assassin is clearly the winner of the day.
Bangladesh’s tactics of bowling slower deliveries in the powerplay overs against Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan, and KL Rahul worked out really well for the visitors as India could only muster 35 runs in the powerplay overs. The slowness of the surface was telling but India’s approach was not in sync with the demands of modern-day cricket. Especially, with the preparations for the T20 World Cup being at its peak, it was just unacceptable and for me, was the biggest low in the game as far as India is concerned.
Powerplay exploitation: - India (3/10), Bangladesh (7/10)
India completely failed in this count, majorly thanks to Shikhar Dhawan’s ODI-style batting. The hosts were behind the eight ball right from the word go and the approach didn’t do any help to their cause. In Bangladesh’s case, for whom I have gone ahead with 7/10, things were not great at the beginning, where they lost Liton Das, but with 20 runs off the last two powerplay overs, it was made up.
Death Bowling: - India (3/10), Bangladesh (5/10)
After conceding just 95 runs in the first 15 overs, it was expected from the Bangladesh seamers to regulate the run-scoring in the death to have a hold on the game. However, Washington Sundar’s short cameo took India’s score to 148, and that paints an average picture for them. As far as India’s case is concerned, they did well to strangulate Bangladesh, but one terrible over by Khaleel Ahmed, in which Rahim hit him for four consecutive fours, ensured that their fate was sealed.
Ground Fielding and Catching: - India (6.5/10), Bangladesh (8/10)
It is wrong to say that India fielded terribly, but once you set a standard, you are definitely going to be judged by that. India were agile in collecting balls but were nowhere close when it came to sending them back to the right end. The sloppiness cost India big time. Bangladesh, however, did well to put on a show. Despite smog affecting the eyes, they managed to take some tough chances, which was applaudable.
Spectator Rating Meter - Good
From a spectator standpoint, this ended up as a very good T20, not only because it was a break from the norm that Bangladesh always lose to India but also because lesser names stood up too.
Cricket FootBall Kabaddi