Ban vs Ire: Bangladesh opened the three-match Twenty20 international series against Ireland with a 22-run victory by DLS method on Monday, thanks to a maiden half-century from Rony Talukdar. Talukdar, who hit 67 off 38 balls with seven fours and three sixes, helped Bangladesh reach 207-5 before rain brought the innings to a halt with four balls remaining. Ireland’s revised target was 104 in 8 overs but they could only manage 81-5.
Bangladesh got off to a great start with Talukdar and Liton Das adding 81 runs in the first powerplay, surpassing their previous high of 74 against Sri Lanka in 2018. “They set the pace with the way they opened and played attacking cricket. The new guys coming in are not panicking, they want to come out and perform,” Bangladesh skipper Shakib Al Hasan said.
Paceman Craig Young claimed 2-45 and broke through with the wicket of Liton in the eighth over. Talukdar completed his fifty off just 24 deliveries with a boundary through extra-cover off legspinner Ben White. Inform Najmul Hossain Shanto was dismissed for 14 by Harry Tector and fast bowler Graham Hume baffled Talukdar with a slower offcutter, which stalled Bangladesh’s progress.
Shamim Hossain made 30 off 20, and Shakib Al Hasan contributed 20 off 13 before the rain arrived with Mehidy Hasan Miraz on 4. “This is what we want. It is difficult for one or two guys to always contribute. We want this kind of all-round performance,” Shakib said.
In response, Paul Stirling and Ross Adair scored 18 runs in the first over of left-arm spinner Nasum Ahmed to give Ireland a ray of hope. However, pacer Hasan Mahmud dismissed Adair with a yorker and fast bowler Taskin Ahmed took the game away from Ireland with three wickets in his first over. Taskin started with Stirling, who made 17, and then dismissed Lorcan Tucker and George Dockrell. He returned to get rid of Tector to finish with his career-best 4-16. Gareth Delany scored a team-best 21 not out.
“It (the wicket) looked tricky at some points, but got flatter and flatter,” Stirling said. “It’s disappointing to still come out on the wrong side. We were unlucky in periods and had we got wickets we could have put a squeeze on. We came on well in the last 10 overs, or the score could have been worse.”
The second match will be held on Wednesday.