20 years ago to the day, Bangladesh cricket graduated to a level from which followed all that we see and celebrate now.
On 13 April, 1997, in Kuala Lumpur, a Martin Suji yorker ricocheted off number 10 batsman Hasibul Hossain's pads and he ran through gleefully to seal the ICC Trophy for Bangladesh by winning the final off the last ball against Kenya in a chase reduced to 25 overs and a match stretched to two days because of rain.
Bangladesh had already qualified for the 1999 World Cup by winning the semifinal against Scotland, which signalled the first of many cricket-related celebrations all across Bangladesh. But the win in the final, delivered by Bangladesh's then core of Mohammad Rafique (15-ball 26), Minhajul Abedin (33-ball 27), Aminul Islam (run-a-ball 37) and skipper Akram Khan (27-ball 22), established Bangladesh as the leader of the Associates, from where they have not looked back since.
Photo: star file