Spinner Nasum Ahmed claimed four wickets as Bangladesh beat Australia by 23 runs in the opening Twenty20 international on Tuesday.
Nasum, a left-arm spinner, returned career-best figures of 4-19 to help dismiss Australia for 108 while chasing a target of 132 as Bangladesh took a 1-0 lead in the five-match series in Dhaka. It was Bangladesh’s first-ever T20 win over Australia, whose four wins over The Tigers came in T20 World Cups. This is the first bilateral series between the two sides. The second T20 is on Wednesday at the same venue.
Earlier, pace bowler Josh Hazlewood led an inspired bowling attack as Australia kept Bangladesh down to 131 for seven. Hazlewood returned impressive figures of 3-24 and fellow quick Mitchell Starc took two wickets after Australia elected to bowl first at the start of the five-match series in Dhaka. Bangladesh’s batsmen failed to convert their starts, including opener Mohammed Naim, who got out for 30 after hitting two fours and two sixes in his 29-ball knock.
Shakib Al Hasan, who survived two dropped chances on 18 and 23, top-scored with 36 off 33 balls before being bowled by Hazlewood in the 17th over. Skipper Mahmudullah Riyad, who made 20, and Afif Hossain, who scored an unbeaten 23, also contributed to give the total some respect. Australia, led by Matthew Wade, have brought in their up and coming T20 talent as they are missing key players, including Steve Smith and Aaron Finch who are both injured. This is the first T20 series between the two sides. Their previous four meetings were all won by Australia at T20 World Cups.
After registering victory, Bangladesh caption Mahmudullah said: “We had a team talk that we were 10 runs short, so we have to field well. It was outstanding, the hunger and energy was there. The bowlers executed their plans really well. You need to have an attacking mindset with the ball early on, that’s what we did. I’m not over the top, we’ve won, it’s gone. Now it’s time to focus on the next game and try and be on top from the first ball, try and manage ourselves, keep our feet on the ground.”
SCORES IN BRIEF
BANGLADESH 131 for 7 (Shakib 36, Naim 30, Hazlewood 3-24, Starc 2-33) beat AUSTRALIA 108 (Marsh 45, Nasum 4-19, Mustafizur 2-16, Shoriful 2-19) by 23 runs