Sri Lanka Fight Back To Win Opening ODI
Sri Lanka 180 (T Perera 80) beat
Bangladesh 167 (Shamsur Rahman 62) by 13 runs
First One-Day International, Dhaka
Sri Lanka won a low-scoring first One-Day International against Bangladesh in Dhaka after their hosts collapsed from 114 for two to 167 all out chasing just 181 to win.
The tourists would not have been in with a chance had it not been for Thisara Perera smashing 80 in 57 balls from number nine in the order before they were bowled out for 180 in 40 overs.
With Shamsur Rahman hitting 62 and Mominul Haque 44, Bangladesh looked well set only to lose their final eight wickets for 53 runs in less than 20 overs.
Mushfiqur Rahim (27) was the only other player to reach double figures as Sri Lanka, led by Angelo Mathews' three for 21, took a remarkable come-from-behind victory.
They themselves had been in desperate trouble with the bat when they collapsed to 67 for eight only for Perera and Sachithra Senanayake (30) to rescue them with an 82-run stand for the ninth wicket.
Perera then monopolised the strike to add a further 31 runs for the final wicket with Lasith Malinga, who was the last man to fall, for a 10-ball duck.
Senanayake went on to play his part with te ball, taking two wickets as Bangladesh lost their way dramatically following a solid start.
If Bangladesh's start, losing the wicket of Anamul Haque second ball aside, was solid, Sri Lanka's had been appalling as they lost eight wickets in 21.3 overs after being inserted by the home team following a delayed start due to rain.
It looked like a good toss to win as Rubel Hossain, Shakib Al Hasan and Arafat Sunny all took two wickets to leave Sri Lanka floundering.
Kushal Perera (20) and Dinesh Chandimal (13) came to terms with conditions and the bowling attack, but only briefly.
Tillakaratne Dilshan (3), Kumar Sangakkara (8), Ashan Priyanjan (6), Mathews (3), Kithruwan Vithanage (7) and Nuwan Kulasekara (0) all failed.
However, Sri Lanka's strategy of picking a team loaded with batsmen, all-rounders and in Kulasekara and Senanayake bowlers who are more than capable of scoring important runs, paid off.
Perera thumped six sixes and four fours while Senanayake played a sensible knock of 30 in 48 balls with two fours and one six during their game-changing partnership.
From having next to no chance, the runs they put on together gave their bowlers something to bowl at. Malinga's effort in staying in for as long as he could while Perera kept on striking at the other end made the game into a competitive one.
The momentum looked like it had shifted completely when Anamul was caught by Mathews off Malinga for nought only for Bangladesh, through Shamsur and Mominul, to hit back.
Shamsur blasted 62 in 49 balls, looking to score quickly and get his side as close to victory as he could, as quickly as he could, while Mominul was more patient, making 44 in 53 balls.
They advanced the score to 79 when Mominul was caught by Dilshan off Perera and Shamsur was joined by Mushfiqur, whose 27 in 50 deliveries helped advance Bangladesh to 114, the point at which things began to go badly wrong.
First, Shamsur was almost comically run out. As an aerial shot fell safely, he had contrived to drop his bat as he tried to make his ground against Malinga's throw. He just failed to get his foot over the line and an enterprising innings, containing five fours and three sixes, was over.
16 balls later Shakib (3) was also run out, Malinga again involved, and Bangladesh almost visibly retreated into their shells.
Nasir Hossain crawled to eight in 29 balls before offering Mathews a catch off Senanayake, who immediately struck again to remove Mahmudullah for a two-ball duck.
Although with Rahim at one end, Bangladesh were still well in the game, they were now losing wickets and Sri Lanka were in the ascendency.
Mathews, leading by example, had Sohag Gazi caught by Vithanage for six, and then both Sunny (5) and Rahim caught by Sangakkara.
He then ended the game by running out Rubel for four after a mix-up between himself and Al-Amin Hossain resulted in Bangladesh being all out in just 39.2 overs.
The second game in the three-match series is on Thursday 20th February.
© Cricket World 2014