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Dhaka Tribune

Tigers a step away from quarters

Update : 05 Mar 2015, 07:51 PM

Bangladesh swatted away any pre-match jitter that might have crept in following the Sri Lanka defeat as they got the better of Scotland by six wickets in a Pool A encounter at Saxton Oval yesterday.

In pursuit of 319 against a determined Scotland, Bangladesh barely broke sweat, reaching their destination with six wickets and 11 deliveries remaining. In the process, Bangladesh also registered their highest successful run-chase in the World Cup.

With this win, Bangladesh gained some much-needed momentum ahead of their all-important clash against England this Monday in Adelaide.

Co-host New Zealand (eight points), 1996 champions Sri Lanka (six points) and four-time winners Australia (five points) are as good as through while Bangladesh are occupying fourth place with five points. England are down at fifth with just two points from four matches.

Bangladesh are virtually competing with England for a quarterfinal berth. With four teams from Pool A progressing to the last eight, Bangladesh can officially confirm their place by defeating England in their next game. Bangladesh will take on the Kiwis in their final match next Friday in Hamilton.

England’s two remaining matches are against Bangladesh and Afghanistan.

It was a superb display with the bat after the first half of the game went horribly wrong for Bangladesh.

The decision of not picking an extra specialist spinner backfired after Mashrafe bin Mortaza won the toss and elected to field. A brilliant century from opener Kyle Coetzer enabled Scotland to post a huge total of 318/8.

Chasing 319, it was not all plain sailing for Bangladesh as opener Anamul Haque was unable to bat after injuring his shoulder in the 31st over bowled by Mahmudullah. To add to that, the Tigers were jolted early in their chase as makeshift opener Soumya Sarkar (two) departed early.

Tamim Iqbal, alongside Mahmudullah, who was promoted to number three, did what they were asked to do as the pair took command of the game. Tamim was outstanding with his beautiful cover drives and elegant pull shots and reached his half century from 53 balls. The southpaw was slowly but surely heading towards his fifth ODI hundred and his first in two years.

However, the lad from Chittagong was stranded just five short of his much-awaited century as he was trapped in front by Josh Davey after scoring a well made 95 off 100 balls with the help of nine fours and a six.

On the other end, Mahmudullah looked compact and also grabbed a half-century. The second-wicket pair added 139 runs which is Bangladesh’s highest partnership for the second wicket in the World Cup.

Mahmudullah eventually departed after hurting his toes while getting bowled. He scored a-run-a-ball 62 while Mushfiqur Rahim came in and joined in the party, smashing a quickfire 60 off 42 balls, ensuring the Tigers never fell behind the required run rate.

It was then Shakib al Hasan and Sabbir Rahman who took Bangladesh past 318. Shakib was unbeaten on 52 from 41 balls while Sabbir was undefeated on 42 off 40 balls. The left-handed Shakib smote five boundaries and a six while youngster Sabbir blasted four boundaries and two sixes.

Earlier, Mashrafe and his bowlers were hammered all over the park by centurion Coetzer as the Tigers looked helpless on the field. The right-hander dominated the Tigers bowlers on a flat deck and became the first Scotsman to smash a hundred in a World Cup. Coetzer reached the landmark with a six off paceman Rubel Hossain.

Coetzer initially paired up with Matt Machan and added 78 runs for the third wicket. Coetzer, the man-of-the-match, then added another 141 runs for the fourth wicket alongside skipper Preston Mommsen, which is the highest partnership for Scotland for any wicket in the World Cup.

Machan scored 35 and Mommsen added 38 balls while Richie Berrington played a quick 16-ball 24 at the end.

Taskin Ahmed took three wickets and Nasir Hossain bagged two while Shakib was the only Bangladesh bowler who conceded less than five runs an over. 

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