Bangladesh 261 (Mushfiqur 144, Mithun 63, Malinga 4-23) v Sri Lanka
Mushfiqur Rahim‘s sublime 144 hauled Bangladesh kicking and screaming to 261, then a fired-up Mashrafe Mortaza set in motion a Sri Lanka collapse, and the first match of the Asia Cup soon turned into a thrashing – Bangladesh claiming victory by 137 runs, after Sri Lanka crashed to 69 for 7, then 124 all out.
A third Bangladesh senior had also played an impressive role in the victory. Tamim Iqbal faced only four deliveries in all, but he had crucially come out to bat again with a broken wrist – which he had sustained in the second over – with nine wickets down. Mushfiqur made spectacular use of his teammate’s bravery, hitting a further three fours and three sixes, as 32 runs were added to the team total, lifting Bangladesh from a modest score to a competitive one.
Though his contribution was eventually drowned out by those of Bangladesh’s experienced players, one Sri Lanka old-timer also had an outstanding outing. Lasith Malinga, playing his first international in a year, shook off the rust, struck twice in his first over, and finished with 4 for 23 from 10 overs, to suggest that his one-day career was for from done yet. Had his teammates held all their catches, Malinga might have wreaked even more damage. He should have had Mohammad Mithun – who went on to make 63 in a 131-run stand with Mushfiqur – caught at mid on for one, if Angelo Mathews had held the catch while diving forward. In general, Sri Lanka were woeful in the field, spilling no fewer than four catches, including two off Mushfiqur, who was reprieved on 10 and 85. For the umpteenth time in the last three years, their catching can be said to have cost Sri Lanka a one-dayer.
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