Sports, Cricket

Shanto’s confidence high to win the series

Published : 27 Dec 2023 09:33 PM

Bangladesh captain Najmul Hossain Shanto’s confidence built up about Bangladesh’s making record with winning the ongoing three-match T-20 series against New Zealand after the Tigers’ historical victory at Mclean Park, Napier on Wednesday.

Bangladesh beat the Kiwis by five wickets to seal their first ever victory on New Zealand soil and took 1-0 lead in the series. Tigers will have to win the second match to confirm the series victory.  

It is a great chance for Bangladesh to end a year with winning all T20 series they played in 2023. 

Bangladesh will play the last two T-20 matches at Bay Oval in Maunt Maunganui on tomorrow and 31st December. 

Meanwhile, Bangladesh won Test match against Kiwis for the time last year at the same venue Maunt Maunganui.  

"The victory in Napier will be a boost for us for the last two T20s in Maunt Maunganui. The second and third T20 is indeed very important for us since we want to win this series," Shanto said after snapping nine-match losing streak in T20 format on New Zealand soil.

"We are very confident now. But we must guard against the complacency and plan for the next two matches. I hope everyone will be alert in doing their job perfectly,’ the skipper said.

Shanto won the toss and did not hesitate to send New Zealand in to bat first in the cloudy Napier weather, as Bangladesh bowlers then came hard on New Zealand batters, stunning them taking three wickets for as many runs, as Kiwis' saw their worst ever start in the T20 cricket.

Ultimately, the Black Caps managed 134 runs for nine wickets of their respective 20 over. 

Left Arm Medium Pacer Shoriful Islam led the charge with 3-26 while Mustafizur Rahman and Mahedi Hasan followed him with 2-15 and 2-14 respectively. 

Bangladesh reached the target in 18.5 over with opener Litton Das hits not out 42 from 36 deliveries with two fours and one six. 

"We are really happy to make a good start to the series by winning the first game. We are proud of this achievement," Shanto said.

Shanto who was highly satisfied with the imposing performances of bowlers said, “Bowlers played vital role to win the game. They are quick learner. Shoriful, Sakib and Mustafizur bowled well with the new ball. I am particularly impressed by the performance of Sheikh Mahedi. He was spinner but he thrived in pace friendly condition.”  

But the victory didn't come with ease. Bangladesh lost wickets at regular intervals and at one phase, it looked they were in trouble. However Liton and Mahedi hit flurries of boundaries to help the side bring up the victory with seven balls to spare.

“Pressure at the end is the beauty of cricket. It's always challenging to bat in this condition against a team like New Zealand. But after restricting them to 134, we were confident about the victory,” he concluded.