Imrul Kayes hit 92 and Mehedi Hasan starred with bat and ball as Bangladesh came out victorious in their second warm-up game on the tour of England and Ireland with a 134-run win over Sussex XI at the Central Cricket Ground in Hove yesterday.
If any reminder was needed that this was a light-hearted practice game, then one need look no further than the fact that Bangladesh squad members Mahmudullah Riyad and Shafiul Islam played for the opposition, a second-string Sussex side.
The unofficial nature of the game aside, Bangladesh will take confidence from a performance that saw them rack up 314 for nine after being sent in to bat in cloudy conditions, and they should be even more pleased that a three-wicket haul from off-spinner Mehedi helped skittle out Sussex for just 180 in 40.3 overs. Mahmudullah scored a 42-ball 32 for the opposition, batting at number four, before he was caught behind off Taskin Ahmed.
Sussex XI were never in the hunt in the chase of a challenging total against Bangladesh’s bowlers, of whom seven were used as all 14 available players were fielded in the practice match. Bangladesh are currently without Shakib Al Hasan, Mustafizur Rahman -- both of whom recently concluded their Indian Premier League stints -- and skipper Mashrafe Bin Mortaza, who came back to Dhaka to be with his ailing wife. Batsman Tamim Iqbal was also rested because of back pain.
Taskin earlier had Sussex captain and opener Philip Salt caught behind for 25, before Sanjamul Islam bowled Angus Robson for 49. Mehedi began to turn the screws with the wicket of Delray Rawlins, before adding the wickets of Alexander Woodland and N Smith to end with figures of three for 31 in six overs. Soumya Sarkar also picked one up, dismissing Michael Burgess with his medium pace while the other part-timer Sabbir Rahman got compatriot Shafiul’s wicket. Subashis Roy then cleaned up the tail with the wickets of Abidine Sakande and Adam Barton to complete the clinical win.
Earlier, Imrul gave Bangladesh the early impetus and a late rescue act from Mehedi helped them recover after a middle-order dip to post 314 for nine in 50 overs.
Soumya Sarkar departed for six, but Imrul and Sabbir Rahman put on a 100-plus partnership for the second wicket, which ended when Sabbir was caught off Dawburn for 52 with the score on 139. Mushfiqur Rahim, captaining this match in the absence of Mashrafe, came in next and carried on the good form which saw him score a century in the first warm-up match against Duke of Norfolk XI on May 1.
Soon afterwards, Imrul retired on a 78-ball 92 with 12 fours and a six to bring Mosaddek Hossain to the crease, but the youngster did not last long as he was trapped leg-before by Rawlins for seven. 186 for three became 211 for four when Nasir Hossain, recalled to the squad for the Ireland tri-series, was caught off J Smith for seven and a below-par score was on the cards when Mushfiqur departed five runs later, caught off the same bowler for 40.
But Mehedi took charge then, and with Nurul Hasan (27), Sanjamul (5) and Taskin (4) took the score to 314, with his contribution being a 55-ball 60 with four fours and three sixes. Shafiul bowled seven over and conceded 37 runs without a wicket for Sussex XI.