Shanto’s career-best 71 helps Tigers to competitive total

Shining BD Desk || Shining BD

Published: 10/30/2022 7:18:16 AM
Bangladesh's Najmul Hossain Shanto plays a shot. Photo: AFP

Bangladesh's Najmul Hossain Shanto plays a shot. Photo: AFP

Under-fire batter Najmul Hossain Shanto hit back at the critics, scoring his maiden T20I fifty to help Bangladesh to a competitive total against Zimbabwe in their T20 World Cup Super 12 clash at the Gabba in Brisbane on Sunday. 

Shanto scored a 55-ball 71, his career-best T20I score, and Afif Hossain rode his luck to play a cameo at the death as Bangladesh posted 150 for seven against familiar foe Zimbabwe. 

Having won the toss, Bangladesh got off to a shaky start as they lost opener Soumya Sarkar and Liton Das inside the Powerplay. Soumya departed without opening his account while Liton Das, despite looking to be in good touch and getting a start, departed in the final over of the Powerplay as he tried to play a scoop off a Blessing Muzarabani delivery. 

Shanto and skipper Shakib Al Hasan then turned things around brilliantly, stitching together a brisk 54-run third-wicket stand. Shakib hit only a solitary boundary but stayed busy stealing singles and doubles during his 20-ball 23. He departed in the 13th over trying to hit Sean Williams for a six over deep midwicket. 

Despite Shakib's wicket, Shanto managed to up the ante, hitting pacer Brad Evans for a massive six over wide long-on and two boundaries to help Bangladesh plunder 17 runs in the 16th over of the game. 

Thanks to Shanto's charge, Bangladesh, who have had troubles scoring runs quickly in the middle overs, took 33 runs in between overs 13-16.    

Bangladesh, at one point, looked to be on course for a much bigger total but those hopes were dented when Shanto departed in the 17th over – caught at mid-off while trying for a maximum off a Sikandar Raza delivery.   

After Shanto's dismissal, Afif, who was dropped twice, struck a six and a boundary at the death to see Bangladesh end up with a par score. Afif scored 29 off 19 deliveries.


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