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Asia Cup 2023: Centurions Mehidy Hasan, Shanto and pacers guide Bangladesh to 89-run win over Afghanistan

Image Source : AP Bangladesh achieved an 89-run win over Afghanistan in their second Group B encounter in Asia Cup

Bangladesh turned their campaign around in the ongoing Asia Cup with a massive 89-run win against Afghanistan in Lahore on Sunday, September 3. Coming off a 5-wicket loss against Sri Lanka, Bangladesh batters uitilised the flatness of the surface at Gaddafi Stadium as Mehidy Hasan Miraz, who was opening for only the second time in ODIs and Najmul Hassan Shanto’s centuries powered their side to a huge 334-run total, which eventually proved to be enough as Afghanistan could muster only 245 runs in response.

It wasn’t an auspicious start for Afghanistan as they lost the toss and Bangladesh made full use of the conditions as the openers gave a 60-run start in the powerplay. Mujeeb ur Rahman dismissed Mohammad Naim with a crackerjack of a delivery and Gulbadin Naib followed it up with a wicket in the next over as Afghanistan made a small comeback. However, their comeback was limited to just those two overs as Mehidy Hasan and Shanto just didn’t give them a chance. 

Both batters didn’t let the run rate drop one bit and played the ball to its merit as slowly and gradually the partnership went past a hundred. Mehidy Hasan, who slammed his maiden ODI ton against India last year, scored his second century and achieved his career-best score before getting retired hurt.

Shanto was joined by Mushfiqur Rahim and he too got to his century as Bangladesh continued to exert pressure on the Afghan bowlers. Despite a few run-outs, skipper Shakib Al Hasan and Rahim’s quickfire cameos helped Bangladesh get to a strong score of 334.

Afghanistan got off to the worst possible start with Rahmanullah Gurbaz getting out for 1. Ibrahim Zadran fought the lone battle with a 74-ball 75 as even though the likes of Hashmatullah Shahidi and Rahmat Shah contributed, it wasn’t enough and they eventually fell short by 89 runs. Taskin Ahmed with 4/44 and Shoriful Islam with figures of 3/36 were the chief contributors with the ball as Bangladesh have put one foot in the door of qualification for the Super Fours.

Afghanistan have a tough match against Sri Lanka in Group B and they need a big win as their NRR is -1.780.

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