Bangladesh keep Champions Trophy hopes alive as duo stage stunning fightback

Bangladesh were inspired by brilliant tons by all-rounder Shahik Al Hasan and Mahmudullah to stun New Zealand by five wickets in the Champions Trophy cricket tournament at Cardiff's Sophia Gardens on Friday. It wasn't just the fact that Bangladesh defeated New Zealand by five wickets, but the manner and the circumstances under which victory was achieved, that made it truly special. The victor can advance to the semi-finals depending on the result of Saturday's England-Australia game at Edgbaston.

Chasing a target of 266, Bangladesh started off miserably and was reduced to 33/4 at one stage.

Bangladesh captain Mashrafe Mortaza's decision to introduce Mosaddek in 42nd over turned out to be a masterstroke as New Zealand could add just 62 runs from the final 10 overs. Taskin is a wicket-taking bowler, and as New Zealand was to find out later in the day, a wicket-taker is always of greater value than a line-and-length bowler. A single in the 45th over made Shakib and Mahmudullah the first Bangladesh pair to have a 200-run partnership in an ODI.

Shakib reached his hundred with a massive six in the 46th over before Boult removed him for 114 and Mahmudullah finished on 102 not out to guide Bangladesh home with 16 balls top spare.

They were involved in a record 224-run fifth wicket partnership as well.

In one of the great one-day global fightbacks, the pair added 224 for the fifth wicket to chase down 266 with 17 balls to spare, and win their final group A match by five wickets in Cardiff.

Jason Roy has been given a vote of confidence by England assistant coach Paul Farbrace before Saturday's Champions Trophy game against Australia.

But, as happened in their no-result washout with Australia and defeat by England, they stumbled once the experienced batsmen were out in quick succession. Bangladesh's Tamim Iqbal also started the tournament with a century, against England, before making 95 against Australia.

Australia beat England easily en route to winning the 2015 World Cup but an admiring Smith said: "I think they've come a long way". When things did get underway Martin Guptill (33) and Luke Ronchi (18) got off to a tidy start as they notched up 47 runs in the first seven overs before Ronchi was caught off the bowling of Taskin Ahmed.

That was the only bit of celebration the New Zealand players will manage on the day as Shakib and Mahmadullah got down to business.

When Adam Milne bowled Mushfiqur Rahim with a 91mph delivery it felt as though Bangladesh had been left with too much to do but Jimmy Neesham's introduction into the attack saw the game shift again.

"It looks like a good surface so hopefully we can get a good score on the board", said Williamson at the toss.

Both New Zealand and Bangladesh have one point after two games, one point behind Australia.

David Warner has been in a good form and said in the lead-in to the match that he is in the best white-ball form of his career.

Recalled bowlers Mosaddek (three for 13 in three overs) and Taskin Ahmed (two for 43 in eight) did the bulk of the damage. "That is most important for us", he added. Interestingly, both Bangladesh and Australia have a NRR of exactly 0.00.

  • Julie Sanders