Cardiff: Bangladesh swept to one of the biggest wins in its history as Mahmudullah and Shakib Al Hasan both hit centuries to secure a five-wicket victory over New Zealand on Friday in a potential decider for a place in the Champions Trophy semifinals.
The two batsmen shared a national-record partnership of 224 runs as Bangladesh finished on 268-5 in 47.2 overs in reply to New Zealand’s 265-8 in 50 overs.
The pair came together with tournament outsider Bangladesh in deep trouble on 33-4 and took their team to the brink of victory on 257-5. It was a record Bangladesh partnership for any ODI wicket and the third highest fifth-wicket ODI partnership for any team.
Mahmudullah hit a 107-ball undefeated 102, with eight fours and two sixes. Shakib scored 114 with 11 fours and one six off 115 balls before he was bowled by Trent Boult.
Sixth-ranked Bangladesh could advance to the semifinals, depending on the result of the England-Australia game at Edgbaston on Saturday. Bangladesh has three points in Group A, one more than Australia.
New Zealand is out of the tournament with one point from three games. Bangladesh captain Mashrafe Mortaza said it was “very difficult” to see his team’s way out of 33-4.
“But once it (the partnership) got to 200 … to be honest I start to believe, because I knew that these two can make the difference, and they did a lot of times,” Mortaza said. “But I never thought that they will have more than a 200 partnership. That was phenomenal.”
Bangladesh had not appeared at this tournament since the 2006 edition, when it failed to get out of the group stage and lost by 10 wickets to West Indies. But the Tigers have gradually built up their reputation and reached the quarterfinals of the 2015 World Cup.
Though it ultimately proved successful, the run chase started badly for Bangladesh when Tamim Iqbal (0) was out leg before wicket in only the second ball of the innings, beaten by rare swing with the white ball from Tim Southee (3-45). Iqbal had scored 65, 128 and 95 in his previous three ODI innings and his early departure was a major blow.
Sabbir Rahman was then caught behind off Southee to leave Bangladesh on 10-2 in the third over. That became 12-3 in the fifth over with Southee’s wicket maiden which claimed Soumya Sarkar (3) leg before and put Southee on 3-10.
Adam Milne moved his team closer to Bangladesh’s vulnerable tail by beating Mushfiqur Rahim (14) with sheer pace, knocking the middle stump out of the ground – but also bringing Mahmudullah and Shakib together.
“In the past, we have defended totals like that on those sorts of surfaces, and we were in a pretty good position to do it again but what a fantastic partnership,” captain Kane Williamson said. “Two very talented players, very experienced players, and it came together today and to get a 200-plus partnership under pressure was simply superb, but frustrating to be on the other side of it.”
Earlier, New Zealand was in good shape with Williamson and Ross Taylor. They shared 83 for the third wicket, and Williamson became the first batsman to score four successive 50-plus scores in the Trophy, before running himself out on 57.
Taylor hit an unhurried 63 off 82 balls, including six fours, before his mistimed ramp shot cost him at 201-4 in the 39th over. From there, New Zealand collapsed. The Kiwis barely saw out their 50 overs, as they lost six wickets for only 64 runs in almost 12 overs at the end, after winning the toss and choosing to bat first