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The Daily Star, Bangladesh Bangladesh put up a better show
Nizamuddin Ahmed - 21 May 1999

CLONTARF, Dublin, May 21: West Indies paced their batting without taking any chances as they convincingly beat Bangladesh by seven wickets in conditions that were alien to both. It was wet and cold, and finally sunny as the 12th match of the World Cup concluded at Clontarf today.

Bangladesh batted first, and till the 50th over to their credit, to score 182. West Indies reached the target losing three wickets and with three-and-a-half overs to spare.

The West Indies batting prowess was not on display and their run rate was not flashy. Which must go to show that Bangladesh bowling attack did not make the chase easy. But neither was it penetrative enough to spell a West Indian doom.

Despite a wet start, it did get sunny in the end, although it remained very cold throughout. The improvement in brightness also encouraged the ticket-holders to make it to the ground to provide a capacity crowd for a stadium of 3,500.

The defeat leaves Bangladesh with two losses from as many matches, the first being to New Zealand. West Indies have their first win, having lost to Pakistan in their previous match.

The crowd at Clontarf was excellent. They cheered every good piece of cricket from either side.

At drinks at the end of the 20th over, the Caribbeans were 65 for no loss. Ridley Jacobs on 26 and Sherwin Campbell on 35 aiming for a big win. But, on resumption, Campbell fell to a fine Manzurul catch in the deep off Khaled Mahmud. A mix up between Mahmud and Naimur resulted in a life for Jacobs, who was stranded half way down the wicket in the 24th over. West Indies were on 84 for one.

They reached the 100-mark in the 28th over when Jimmy Adams was on 18 and Jacobs on 43. It was turning into a boring innings until Khaled Mahmud's exploits in the 32nd over brought some excitement as his run-out attempt called the attention of the third umpire. The crowd cheered that and louder when Jacobs was shown the red.

Brian Lara came in with his side needing 68 runs from 18 overs. It was Minhazul Abedin's honour to bowl to the living legend the first delivery. Lara was later caught at mid-off by Hasibul off a Minhazul delivery after making run-a-ball 25. Perhaps it was a bigger laurel for Minhajul.

Chanderpaul did not have much to achieve and played careful shots to reach his eleven.

It was befitting that Adams smacked the winning four.

The mainstay of the West Indies innings was 53 from Adams and 51 from Jacobs. The other run-getter was opener Campbell (36).

The match would go some way to lift Bangladesh's morale. That is what is lacking. The tiger is as yet without its killer instincts.

Bangladesh have earned some respect today. After all, it took the mighty West Indies, Lara including, 46.3 overs to overhaul Bangladesh's collection.

In temperatures below five degrees, Bangladesh did well to restrict the West Indies opening pair of Jacobs and Campbell for 21 in the first 10 overs. Both Hasibul and Manzurul were operating with the idea that today they had to defend. The entire team played in great spirit and was seen to be positive in stopping singles and boundaries.

The West Indies pair found more fraternity with first-change bowler Khaled Mahmud, who was sent over for six by Jacobs in his first over, and then for a four. The game was not without its comedy of errors. Shahriar threw for four byes in trying to run out Jacobs after running from the gully, helping West Indies move close to 50 in the 15th over. Campbell brought that 50 with a cracking shot that sizzled past Akram's left hand at cover.

Earlier, Opener Mehrab Hossain, the only Bangladeshi to score an official one-day century, led the line with a spirited 64.

Naimur Rahman contributed 45 and added 85 for the sixth wicket with Mehrab after four wickets fell for 55 before Bangladesh were dismissed with four balls remaining.

More ...

Bangladesh earn some respect

Clontarf Cricket Stadium is some fifteen minutes drive from Dublin city centre. This being just a small club, where rugby rules, facilities are very much wanting for an international cricket match. The Press Box in a tent with six openings covered with transparent plastic. Outside, the high wind ratted the large tent and there are fears of being swept away.

Not unlikely, considering the wet weather with which the day started. For once, well more than once, the weatherman seemed to have got it right. Showers were predicted throughout the day with occasional sunny breaks. ICC announced a delayed 11.15 am start, but that was followed by another downpour. Both team came on to the field at around 11 am to limber up. The sun finely smiled on the sparse crowd soon after.

In contrast to Chelmsford, the crowd here was predominantly non-Bangladeshi. Fewer flags, lesser support. Bangladesh Betar commentator Shamim Ashraf managed to convince the hosts the need to fly a flag of the Asian nation as there was none. Finally, the red and green flag was flown on the same mast as that of the West Indians; the rugby club flag would not come down.

Bangladesh won the toss and, with the weather promised to be threatening, Aminul Islam elected to bat. But, opinion was divided whether he should have made the West Indies bat and let his bowlers take advantage of the windy conditions.

About a hundred Bangladeshis intermingled with the near by 3000 strong crowd when the match got off to a late start at 11.30. It was very windy and the umpires were having difficulty in keeping the bails on the stumps.

Walsh and Dillon opening the attack for the Caribbean did not appear to unnerve the Bangladeshi openers, Shahriar Hossain and Mehrab Hossain. Both the batsman began by middling the ball until Shahriar failed to get out of the way of a rising delivery from Walsh. Campbell made no mistake to grab the gift and it appeared that Bangladesh were heading for another collapse.

Akram Khan fell cheaply for four when Bangladesh were on 28. The former captain was beaten by a variation in Dillon's pace out offered a dolly to Lara.

Aminul Islam was not comfortable in the chill. He perished just before the drinks break. Behind stumps, Jacobs did not have to move at all as he held on to a King delivery via the captain's bat.

Minhazul Abedin, making his World Cup debut, was dropped at second slip by Simmons, again off King, when on two. Abedin soon went his captain's way and was caught to the same royalty. Bangladesh, overcome by the wind, the falling temperature and the Windies, were reduced to 55 for four by the 23rd over.

There was sunshine when the second drinks break was taken in the 35th over with Naimur Rahman and Mehrab Hossain making a partnership that made Bangladeshis smile. Mehrab Hossain's 51 came in 113 balls, that also included a quartet of boundaries. There was growing confidence.

The 50-partnership in the fifth wicket came from 14 overs, a commendable performance as the batsmen began to dominate the bowlers.

As the excited Bangladesh crowd hoped for a hundred partnership, Mehrab skied at mid-wicket off Simmons down Chanderpaul' throat. Mehrab's bold 64 came from 129 balls, that included a huge six against Dillon. The 85-run, 78-minute partnership came to an end and Bangladesh were respectably placed at 139 for five.

Soon it was time to look forward to Naimur's fifty but the gutsy lad was five short when he was trapped leg before to Walsh.

Next to go was Khald Masud, already termed as a good wicketkeeper by some in the English press. He was beaten by King's pace and saw his middle and off stumps uprooted.

Khaled Mehmud, displaying a degree of positiveness in his approach, as did most of the Bangladeshis on the day, was next to go as he top-edged Walsh to third man where Bryan did enough acrobatics to draw the entire West Indies team after the dismissal.

In the end Bangladesh did not reach the 200-mark but 182 was a very proud score against the might of the West Indies.

Walsh was the most successful West Indian bowler with figures of 10-0-25-4 and King did a shade less with three for thirty.

An 85-run fifth-wicket stand between Mehrab Hossain and Naimur Rahman helped Bangladesh garner the respectable total before being bowled out in the final over.

In the first ODI at Clontarf and the first between the two sides Bangladesh was not disgraced. The rank-outsiders put up a 'pretty good effort', and not many sides would be able to score 183 against the West Indies these days.

The West Indians may need to tidy up their fielding as well as bowling, for Mr Sundries at 38 was the third highest to account for the Bangladesh total.

Source: The Daily Star, Bangladesh
Editorial comments can be sent to The Daily Star at webmaster@dailystarnews.com