Sports desk, Mar 18: Bangladesh set two new team records in their 183-run win over Ireland in the first ODI in Sylhet. It is their biggest win in ODIs, batting first, after they scored 338 for 8, their highest total in the format, too. The visitors, who have come to these shores after 15 years, were bowled out for 155 in 30.5 overs.
Bangladesh’s innings was built around Shakib Al Hasan and Towhid Hridoy making nineties, with Mushfiqur Rahim’s fiery 26-ball 44 complementing their effort. Hridoy’s 92 is the highest by a Bangladeshi debutant in ODIs, beating Nasir Hossain’s 63 in 2011. Hridoy became the first batter from this team to score a fifty on debut batting in the top five. Shakib scored 93, the fourth time he has fallen in the nineties. The pair added 135 runs for the fourth wicket, the foundation on which Bangladesh built their record-breaking total.
With a big chase in front of them, Ireland suffered a top- and middle-order collapse, triggered by Shakib and then made worse by Ebadot Hossain and Taskin Ahmed picking up four wickets in quick time. Nasum Ahmed cleaned up the lower order with three wickets. On the day of winning the ESPNcricinfo award for 2022’s best Test bowling performance, Ebadot finished on his career-best ODI figures of 4 for 42.
But it was Bangladesh’s batting that made this victory possible. The big partnership between Hridoy and Shakib came on the back of Ireland taking three early wickets. Paul Stirling took the catches of both Tamim Iqbal and Litton Das, before Andy McBrine removed Najmul Hossain Shanto for 25. The trio must have rued their luck having seen what followed.
Shakib and Hridoy spent roughly 15 overs rebuilding the innings before unfurling a flurry of boundaries. During this consolidation period, Shakib became the third cricketer to reach 7,000 runs and 300 wickets in ODIs. The pair struck a four each in the 32nd over before Shakib launched into Harry Tector in the 35th over. He struck five fours — sweeping twice, cutting one through point, and chipping over cover and long-on – as Bangladesh lifted the scoring significantly.
A century after four years stared back at Shakib at this stage but Graham Hume, Ireland’s best bowler of the day, removed him with a wide yorker. This was Shakib’s eighth dismissal in the 90s in all formats.