Australia Couldn’t Finish Bangladesh Tour on a High

In spite of deploying a relatively spin-heavy eleven, Australia couldn’t avoid another defeat of their Bangladesh tour. They had really high hopes and expectations to leave Bangladesh with 5-0. But the Bangladeshi bowlers used the home condition advantage wisely to secure the series 4-1. 

After winning three consecutive matches, Bangladesh had the opportunity of another Banglawash. But somehow, Australia managed to salvage a victory in the fourth T20 match. 

Bangladesh cricketers celebrate after winning the fifth match. Photo: AFP

Australia had a tough tour of Bangladesh. As if losing the series wasn’t enough. Australia also lost the last match and was bowled out for 62, their lowest total ever in the T20s. They lost their last 8 wickets only for 24. 

Bangladesh started playing with two changes in the squad. Mosaddek Hossain and Mohammad Saifuddin replaced  Shamim Hossain and Shariful Islam. Australia also made two changes. Nathan Ellis and Adam Zampa replaced Andrew Tye and Josh Hazlewood.

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Once again the pitch was a slow and gripping wicket best suited for spinners. That’s why Australia also played with two-leg spinners in the squad. 

 Bangladesh gave a robust start with 33 in just 3 overs. The run rate was more than 10 for almost 4 overs and it was the highest total opening partnership for both teams throughout the series. 

Tigers lost their first wicket for 42 as Mahedi tried to play pull shot on backfoot against Ashton Turner. However, he lost his grip on the bat and ended up losing his wicket. The opener Naim also walked out after getting a good start of 23 off 23 balls. 

Shakib AL Hasan also struggled to make only 11 runs off 20 balls and got dismissed LBW for the first time ever in T20s. After a robust start, Bangladesh somehow managed to reach 65 for 3 at the end of 11 overs. 

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Bangladesh T20 captain Mahmudullah and Soumya running between the wicket during the fifth and final T20 match between Bangladesh and Australia
Bangladesh T20 captain Mahmudullah and Soumya running between the wicket during the fifth and final T20 match between Bangladesh and Australia. Photo: AFP

Bangladeshi batsmen couldn’t pick up the slower balls of Ellis and Dan Christian. They restricted batsmen to score only 20 runs in the last five overs. Tigers stopped at 122 for 8 wickets. 

Australia changed their strategy in this match as they sent Dan Christian with Matthew Wade to open their innings as Dan hit 5 sixes in one over of Shakib in the previous match. Their plan was to make quick runs on the scoreboard so that the next batsmen couldn’t get under pressure. 

But their plan failed as Nasum gave the early breakthrough. He struck with his very first ball. Dan tried to play a pull shot but failed to connect the ball. As a result, the ball found its path to the stamps. 

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Nasum Ahmed again took another wicket in his second over. This time in-form Mitch Marsh got dismissed. 

Shakib taking the big fish, Matthew Wade’s wicket | Firoz Ahmed

Then Shakib took Matthew Wade’s wicket with quicker delivery and was just one wicket away from being the second bowler to get 100 wickets in T20s after Lasith Malinga. 

In the middle overs, Saifuddin struck twice in his one over to leave Aussies reeling. Then Shakib dismissed Turner to reach his magical moment. He just completed three figures and became the only player to have scored 1500 runs and 100 wickets in T20s. 

Shakib then wiped off the Aussie tails hauling 4 for 9 to bundle out Australia for their lowest total ever 62. Pacer Saifuddin also grabbed 3 important wickets along with Shakib Al Hasan. 

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