Bangladesh all-rounder Shakib al Hasan provided his team with a much-needed breakthrough when they were falling behind against Sri Lanka in their T20 World Cup match on Sunday. The two sides are part of Group 1 and are battling it out in their first Super 12 stage match.
Chasing a target of 172 at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium, the Lankans were breezing along. Pathum Nissanka and Charith Asalanka were scoring runs at will despite the early loss of experienced opener, Kusal Perera. Asalanka in particular churned boundaries at will.
He kept the required rate under check on a sluggish pitch. Just when they were about to accelerate even further, Bangladesh’s go-to man, Shakib al Hasan brought them back into the game. After an economical first over, he got the wicket of the set Nissanka.
Shakib tossed one up to which Nissanka attempted a slog sweep. The ball wasn’t full enough to be swept and Nissanka wasn’t behind the line of the delivery either. He made contact with thin air and watched in aghast as the stumps were rattled.
Earlier, Mushfiqur Rahim and Mohammad Naim scored twin fifties to propel the Bangla side to a competitive total of 171. The spinners were countered quite effectively by Rahim, which proved to be the difference-maker. Lankans were also without their primary spin option, Maheesh Theekshana.