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The Electronic Telegraph Warm-up match: Middlesex v Bangladesh
Neville Scott in Southgate - 10 May 1999

Bangladesh spin magic web

Bangladesh (203-2) bt Middx (223-6) by 12 runs (Duckworth/Lewis method)

The most notable defeat recorded in these parts - witnessed by millions on television - came in the last General Election when Michael Portillo lost his Enfield and Southgate seat.

In Brick Lane, where Bengalis celebrated their New Year last Sunday, the humbling of mighty Middlesex will probably seem more momentous still. As at Chelmsford on Saturday Bangladesh's victory here owed most to their use of expert spin.

More impressively, where Essex had a series of right-handers undone by the slow left-arm duo of Enamul Hoque and Mohammed Rafique - here helped by the off-breaks of Naimur Rahman in his first match - the same pair now confronted left- handers Justin Langer and Paul Weekes through a 107-run second-wicket stand.

As Middlesex sought a revised target of 236 in 43 overs, they were so contained that the asking rate had reached 6.7 when Langer was run out trying to increase the tempo. Weekes went lbw three overs later, for 63 from 90 balls, trying to work away the slow medium of Minhazul Abedin.

As Owais Shah fell to the same bowler at long-on, Keith Dutch was stumped charging Hoque and Richard Johnson bowled trying a head-up drive at Rafique, 37 were needed from the last three overs - beyond even Mark Ramprakash's would-be big hitting.

Bangladesh's runs, against impressive Middlesex fielding, had mainly come, in often bucketing rain, from portly former captain, Akram Khan, whose unbeaten 80 from 91 balls again gave the innings its spine, and Shahriar Hossain (52).

Edinburgh, Dublin and Riverside pitches will be far less welcoming than those at Chelmsford and Southgate, but Bangladesh have already confounded most predictions.

Source: The Electronic Telegraph
Editorial comments can be sent to The Electronic Telegraph at et@telegraph.co.uk