By BV Swagath
Bangladesh achieved a rare series victory against a full member nation when they defeated West Indies in a thrilling fashion in the Final ODI at the Shere Bangla National Stadium. The hosts held their nerve to clinch a narrow 2-wicket win in what was yet another low-scoring affair in the series. Bangladesh had won the first two ODIs but saw West Indies bounce back to win the next two ODIs. The Tigers ended up having the last laugh in the decider to take the series 3-2.
Asking West Indies to bat first after winning the toss, Bangladesh had the visitors in early trouble at 17 for 3 in 7.2 overs after which they were simply overpowered by the dangerous Kieron Pollard. Putting up a third wicket stand of 132 with Darren Bravo, Pollard made an entertaining 85 from 74 balls while striking 5 fours and 8 sixes. Bravo settled with a slow 51 from 108 balls (with 3 fours and a six). Bangladesh managed to bowl out the Windies in 48 overs for a modest total of 217.
Fast bowler Shafiul Islam took 3 for 31 while bowling 4 maidens in 9 overs. Mahmudullah and Mominul Haque chipped in with a couple of wickets each for the homeside. It was a similar top order woes for Bangladesh at 30 for 3 in 8.1 overs but recovered towards half of the target because of a 91-run stand between Mahmudullah (48 from 45 balls with 7 fours) and Skipper Mushfiqur Rahim (44 from 56 balls with 7 fours).
Bangladesh kept on losing wickets at regular intervals in the second part of their innings but the young Nasir Hossain showed good temperament to seal the match with his unbeaten 39 (from 52 balls with 2 fours and a six). Fast bowler Kemar Roach’s 5 for 56 and Sunil Narine’s 3 for 38 went in vain for the West Indies. Bangladesh won the match with six full overs to spare.
Mahmudullah for his all-round show of 2 for 38 and 48 with the bat got the Man of the Match. The Bangladeshi Captain Mushfiqur Rahim got the Man of the Series award.