Dhaka – Bangladesh completed a clean sweep of visiting Zimbabwe in the three-match ODI series beating them by seven wickets in the third and final game at Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium in Chattogram on Friday.
Bangladesh got a seven-wicket victory in the second match in Chattogram on Wednesday and a 28-run win in the first encounter in Dhaka on October 21 to register the fourth sweep against Zimbabwe in their 16 series and also third successive clean sweep at home since 2014.
Player of the series Imrul Kayes [115 off 112b; 10×4; 2×6] and man of the match Soumya Sarkar [117 off 92b; 9×4; 6×6] set the second best partnership record in any stand for Bangladesh sharing 220 runs off 29.1 overs in the second wicket stand, which took them to the winning mark scoring 288 for 3 in 42.1 overs.
The X-factor in the series, Kayes has become the most run-scoring batsman for Bangladesh in a three-match ODI series leapfrogging Tamim Iqbal in the match.
With 349 runs in his bag, he also featured 2nd in the list of most run-scorers in a three-match series of all countries after Pakistan’s Babar Azam who aggregated 360 runs [120-123-117] against West Indies in 2016.
Kayes who entered the crease 79 runs adrift to cross Tamim Iqbal’s Bangladesh record of 312 made against Pakistan in 2015 took two runs off Richard Ngarava in the 24.2 overs to reach 314 when the Tigers were batting on 166* for 1 after an early shock of losing Liton Kumar Das for duck in the innings very first ball.
Soumya was removed from the second stand on 220/2 in 30th over after completing his second ODI century. He took a single off Wellington Masakadza in the innings 27.1 overs to reach the 100-run mark off just 81 balls, including nine fours and four sixes, when Bangladesh were on 199/1. Finally, he was caught by Donald Tiripano off skipper Hamilton Masakadza for 117.
Kayes was caught by Elton Chigumbura off Wellington Masakadza on 274/3 in 39.3 overs before Mushfiqur Rahim [28* off 39b; 1×4; 1×6] — hit a six to seal the win — and Mohammad Mithun [7* off 11b] added unbeaten 14* off 16 balls.
Bangladesh witnessed a bad start with bat as opener Liton Kumar Das was out for duck in the innings first ball off Kyle Jarvis.
Hamilton Masakadza [1/3], Kyle Jarvis [1/47] and Wellington Masakadza [1/71] equally shared three wickets for Zimbabwe.
Zimbabwe posted 286 for 5 in 50 overs spurred by unbeaten century 129 by Sean Williams alongside sharing a innings-shaping partnership of 136 off 24 overs with Brendon Taylor in the third wicket stand after an early loss of 2 wickets for 6 in 2.4 overs.
Spinner Nazmul Islam broke the formidable third-wicket partnership by dismissing Brendon Taylor who hit 75 off 72 balls featuring eight boundaries and three sixes before being caught behind by Mushfiqur Rahim on 138/3 in 26.4 overs.
After the dismissal of Taylor, Sean Williams continued till the end, firing 10 boundaries and one six in his innings of 143 balls, and shared 84 runs off 15.3 overs and a quick 62 off 7.1 overs in the next two stands with Sikandar Raza [40 off 51b; 2×4; 1×6] and Peter Moor [28 off 21b; 2×6].
It was a bright start from the hosts in the match as pace bowler Mohammed Saifuddin bowled out Cephas Zhuwao for duck in his third delivery of the inning’s second over for Bangladesh’s first breakthrough before left-handed pacer Abu Hider Rony bowled out opener-cum-skipper Hamilton Masakadza just after six balls, keeping the visitors on the same collection in 2.4 overs.
Nazmul Islam got two wickets for 58 runs in eight overs while Abu Hider [1/39] and Saifuddin [1/51] equally shared two wickets for Bangladesh.
Bangladesh captain Mashrafe Bin Mortaza won the toss in all three games and elected to field first for the both games in Chattogram after opting to bat first in Dhaka