Shakib masterclass sinks Australia to make it 4-1 for Tigers


Shakib Al Hasan produced a masterclass to force Australia hit the lowest ebb as Bangladesh secured a 60-run victory in the fifth and final Twenty20 International to win the series by 4-1 at Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium on Monday.

The ace all-rounder claimed 4-9 with his wily left-arm spin to bowl Australia out for their lowest 62 in 13.4 overs in the T20 cricket after Bangladesh managed to put up a moderate 122-8.

This was Bangladesh’s second largest victory after their 71-run win against Ireland. It was however Australia’s fourth biggest defeat in this format.

In the process, Shakib reached the milestone of 100 wickets in T20 International cricket as only the second bowler after Sri Lanka great
Lasith Malinga.

Pacer Mohammad Saifuddin ended with 3-12 to play a key role in triggering Australia’s collapse.

Only two batsmen of Australia could reach double digit figure-captain Matthew Wade scored 22 and Ben McDermott made 17.

Australia indeed were thrown out of the game right from the chase when left-arm spinner Nasum Ahmed gave them a twin blow, dismissing
Dan Christian for 3 and in form Mitchell Marsh for 4, leaving them at 17-2.

Shakib got first of his four wickets, baffling Australia captain Matthew Wade with quicker deliver. The celebrated allrounder then got the better of Ashton Turner for his 100th wicket as Australia’s innings took a nosedive. In between Saifuddin, one of the two changes by Bangladesh, ripped through Australian middle order with slower deliveries and off cutter.

Such was their impact that Bangladesh needed not Mustafizur Rahman too much in the match. The Fizz who was the biggest nemesis of the
Australians in this series could bowl just one over.

Shakib however ensured Australia would fail to go past its previous lowest-79 against England at Southampton.

Bangladesh batsmen also were not comfortable in this extremely slow track after their captain Mahmudullah Riyad decided to bat first.

But the Tigers got a decent start. The decision to send Mahedi Hasan open the innings with Mohammad Naim, instead of out-of-form Soumya
Sarkar worked well as they added 42 runs in just 4.3 overs to provide a good platform. But Australia bowlers regrouped well to stall Bangladesh’s progress.

Offspinner Ashton Turner provided the breakthrough, dismissing Mahedi for 12 and pacer Dan Christian then blew Bangladesh further
with the wicket of Naim who top-scored the side with run-a-ball-23.

With the Australian bowlers maintaining a disciplined line and length, Bangladesh batsmen found it tough to rotate the scoreboard

Shakib Al Hasan played 20 balls for his 11 while Soumya Sarkar who batted at No. 4 position made 16 off 18. Skipper Mahmudullah Riyad
however maintained strike rate over 100, as he struck 19 off 14 with one six.

The Australian pacers, Nathan Ellis and Christian then used the slower deliveries well in the death overs to curb the aggression of
Bangladesh batsmen.

Both Ellis, the hat-trick man of his previous match and Christian claimed two wickets apiece. Ashton Turner, Ashton Agar and Adam Zampa picked up one wicket each.