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New Zealand won the match but Bangladesh won the hearts of the fans, as they fought like real tigers to win their second-round clash at the 2019 ICC World Cup at the Kia Oval in London yesterday.
Bangladesh has captured the imagination of the fans at this World Cup with their brave display and with a little more luck and runs yesterday, they could have won their second successive match.
Set 245 runs to win, New Zealand got 82 from Ross Taylor as they scraped home in front of 25,000 fans at the Oval. Bangladesh was able to send back dangerous openers Martin Guptill and Colin Munroe but a 105-run third wicket partnership between Taylor and skipper Kane Williamson was the difference. Taylor fell for 82 off 91 balls with nine fours, while Williamson scored 40 off 72 balls with one four.
At 160/2 the game looked dead and buried but Mehidy Hasan Miraz and Mosadek Hossein with two wickets each brought the Bangladeshis right back into the encounter.
However, in the end, New Zealand was able to get over the ropes with two wickets standing and 17 balls to spare.
Earlier, New Zealand won the toss and has been the case this summer, they sent the opposition in to bat. Opener Soumya Sarkar and Tamin Iqbal again played very positive cricket. They were quick to pounce on anything offline or length and was able to keep the massive Bangladesh fan support here on their feet.
However, the Kiwi bowlers were more disciplined than the South Africans were against Bangladesh and only gave away 49 runs from the first 10 overs. In that time, as well Matt Henry was able to bowl Sarkar with the score at 45. Sarkar was dismissed playing a big heave and left the park for 25 off 25 balls with three fours.
Up next was Shakib Al Hasan and he continued from where he left off in the last game. He played some crisp shots on either side of the wicket and took the score to 60 when Iqbal left for a 38-ball 24.
The New Zealanders were able to keep the score in check by taking wickets and a bad mix-up with the after a partnership of 50 between Al Hasan and Mushfiqur Rahim, saw the latter left run out for 19. A; Hasan was the man in charge until he edged Colin de Grandhomme into the gloves of wicketkeeper Tom Lathan for a well played 64. His second half-century in as many matches came off 68 balls and included seven fours.
After that, there were some cameos from Mahamudullah Riaz (20) and Mohammad Saifuddin (29), as the Bangladeshis was bowled out in the last over for 244. Henry was the pick of the bowlers for New Zealand with 4/47, while Trent Boult got 2/47. Lookie Fergusson was very impressive again going for just 40 runs and taking one wicket in his 10 overs. He bowled with great pace to trouble the Asians and one of his deliveries was timed at 93 miles per hour.