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Bangladesh beat India, clinch series

By The Assam Tribune

MIRPUR, June 21 (IANS): Bangladesh produced a clinical performance with the ball and then backed it up with the bat to claim a remarkable six-wicket victory against India in the second One-Day International (ODI) and thus clinch the three-match series 2-0 here on Sunday.

The hosts created history as they, for the first time, clinched a bilateral ODI series against their neighbours.

Chasing a meek total of 200 in a rain-hit 47-overs-a-side match posted by the visitors, Bangladesh scored 200/4 in 38 overs.

Bangladesh's left-arm pacer Mustafizur Rahman (6-43) was the star of the match. He picked up a back-to-back five-wicket haul after his 5-50 in the first ODI. While chasing, Shakib Al Hasan top scored and remained unbeaten on 50.

It was Bangladesh's only fifth win in 31 ODI matches against their mighty neighbours, which also avenged their controversial World Cup quarter-final loss that started hostility among the two cricketing boards, and culminated with the resignation of Bangladesh's Mustafa Kamal as International Cricket Council (ICC) president.

The run chase began on a positive note when openers Tamim Iqbal and Soumya Sarkar took the India bowlers on in the first couple of overs.

But Dhawal Kulkarni hit the brakes in the scoring as Tamim (13) was caught in the slips in the seventh over.

Incoming batsman Litton Das and his partner Sarkar took it from where Tamim left. Quick singles, twos and a couple of boundaries brought pressure back on India.

As the hosts scored freely, India broke the short partnership when Sarkar was dismissed in the 17th over. Litton Das too fell soon.

But two experienced batsman, Mushfiqur Rahim and Shakib Al Hasan, pitched in at the right time to take Bangladesh close to the victory line.

A 54-run partnership between the duo helped the hosts inch closer to the historic win.

Rahim's wicket in the 30th over, when the score was 152/4, brought some smiles in the faces of the Indians as they thought of making a comeback in the game.

But Shakib had other plans, and with his experience, steered his team to victory.

All the Indian bowlers went for runs without being amongst the wickets.

Earlier on in the innings, opting to bat first, the visitors got off to a worst possible start, losing opener Rohit Sharma without scoring in the very second ball.

Incoming batsman Virat Kohli (23), who was looking to get back runs under his belt, was dismissed as he was given leg before off the bowling of Nasir Hossain.

With the dismissal of India's vice captain, skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni made a surprise entry at four. India's score at that time was 74/2 in 12.3 overs.

Shikhar Dhawan (53), who opened the innings, was looking good to get some runs when it mattered most for the team, but was caught behind while trying to step out after giving a sharp edge to the wicket-keeper off the bowling off spinner Hossain.

Incoming batsman Ambati Rayudu also gave his wicket away without scoring. India was tottering at 110/4 in 21.4 overs.

Suresh Raina (34) and Dhoni held on to pile up a 50-run partnership but Raina too fell in the third ball of the batting powerplay in the 35th over.

Dhoni (47), Axar Patel (0), Ravichandran Ashwin (4) fell in clusters after rain stopped play.

The match was stopped for an hour and 45 minutes due to heavy showers.

When play resumed, it took the hosts two overs to finish the visitors innings. Ravindra Jadeja (19) and Bhuvneshwar Kumar (3) fell to the pacers.

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