Mehidy four-fer pips Hasaranga special as Bangladesh take lead

Sri Lanka’s chase of 258 resembled a struggling vehicle engine; waiting to be nudged, and then gaining spark before eventually running out of steam. After a brisk start, a magnificent second-spell [6 overs 19 runs 3 wickets 2 maidens] from Mehidy Hasan broke the back of the chase before Wanindu Hasaranga revived hopes with a quickfire fifty, only for his team to fall 33 short of the target as Bangladesh drew first blood in the three-match series.

“Our batsmen must bat at least 30-35 overs, I was a bit disappointed with that,” a disappointed Kusal Perera said in the post-match presentation. Three of the top four batters, including the skipper, got starts but none failed to convert it into a significant one. Online Cricket Id

To make matters worse for the visitors, they lost 4 wickets for 20 runs in the middle overs which diffused all hopes of a comeback. Enter Hasaranga. The all-rounder fought fire with fire and tonked bowlers to all corners, engineering vital partnerships with Shanaka and Udana while at it. With 47 to get, both Hasaranga and Udana got out off successive deliveries, bringing an end to what seemed like an inspired comeback.

Earlier in the day, Opting to bat, Bangladesh lost Liton Das in the second over and were made to work hard for their runs in the powerplay. Shakib Al Hasan, at three, looked positive against pace but the introduction of spin from both ends led to his downfall, eventually chipping an attempted loft to the fielder in the 13th over. None of that, however, perturbed the skipper Tamim Iqbal, who managed a carefully-compiled fifty whilst keeping the scorecard ticking with quick singles. Just when the partnership (with Mushfiqur Rahim) helped regain some momentum, a double-strike from Dhananjaya de Silva, in his second spell, forced the hosts to adopt a cautious approach during the middle overs.

Both Mushfiqur and Mahmudullah paced their innings to perfection, constructing a much-needed 109-run stand for the fifth wicket to resurrect the innings for the home team. While Mushfiqur attacked spinners on occasions, Mahmudullah played the perfect second fiddle to his senior partner. In a bid to up the ante, Mushfiqur miscued a reverse sweep on 84 and, as often is the case in cricket, his partner failed to kick on after reaching a hard-earned fifty. Quick cameos from Afif Hossain Saifuddin ensured the home team squeezed 24 off the last two overs. Sri Lankan bowlers looked disciplined at the start, but failed to create enough chances in the middle overs. Free Betting Tips

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