New Zealand Humbled By Inspired Bangladesh

202-3 (Siddique 85, Ashraful 60no, Styris 1-23) beat
New Zealand 201-9 (Oram 57, Mortaza 4-44, Razzak 3-32) by seven wickets
1st One Day International, Mirpur

By Graham Wilson

Bangladesh claimed their first victory over New Zealand in a full international with a comprehensive seven-wicket triumph in the first of three One Day Internationals at Mirpur. Now only England and the West Indies are yet to be beaten by the Tigers and all involved with the side will be desperately hoping that this win doesn't herald another false dawn.

Jacob Oram scored his 10th One Day International half-century as New Zealand, 89 for six after 25 overs, posted 201 for nine but half-centuries from Zunaid Siddique and captain Mohammad Ashraful ensured that the target of 202 was reached with four and a half overs to spare.

Bangladesh made light of the loss of 14 players to the Indian Cricket League to have New Zealand struggling at the halfway mark before Oram added 70 runs with captain Daniel Vettori (30) and a late flurry of runs pushed them past the 200 mark.

After winning the toss and choosing to field first, Bangladesh, who have never beaten the Black Caps in an official international, reduced their tourists to 79 for six with Mashrafe Mortaza taking three wickets.

New Zealand started brightly enough, the recalled Jesse Ryder (34) and Brendon McCullum (14) adding 47 in 8.1 overs before McCullum was caught by Syed Rasel to become Mortaza's first victim.

He followed that up by having Ryder caught by Mahmudullah and Jamie How trapped in front for seven.

Ross Taylor (two) was adjudged lbw to Shahadat Hossain before Scott Styris (four) and Daniel Flynn (six) were dismissed by left-arm spinner Abdur Razzak, leaving Oram and Vettori with the task of getting their side up to a competitive total.

The experienced pair of left-handers responded to the challenge, playing patiently - their 70 runs taking nearly 20 overs. Oram hit four fours and a six with Vettori contributing four boundaries before both men fell to spinners Razzak and Shakib Al Hasan respectively.

Kyle Mills (16) and Tim Southee (19 not out) threw the bat with good effect at the death, Mills falling to Mortaza for his fourth victim as he finished with four for 44 along with Razzak's three for 32 to leave the match wide open.

Tamim Iqbal hit 12 from 12 balls as he looked to get Bangladesh's reply off to a flying start but when he was caught by Styris off of Mills, alarm bells may have started to ring.

However, the anticipated collapse never came with Mushfiqur Rahim (30) putting on a patient stand worth 67 for the second wicket with Siddique.

The decision to promote the recalled wicket-keeper to number three in the order proved an effective one, as it gave Ashraful the platform to come in late on and take the attack to the New Zealanders, as he passed his half-century in 46 balls with four boundaries and a six to hurry his side towards victory.

Siddique notched up his maiden ODI half-century and ended 15 short of a century when he holed out to Oram off of Gillespie in the 44th over, leaving Ashraful, unbeaten on 60, and Shakib Al Hasan, on five, to complete the job.

At the halfway stage, they had been 90 for two - just one more run ahead of New Zealand but crucially with wickets in hand which enabled them to pull off the win which puts them 1-0 up in the series with two matches still to play.

© Cricket World 2008