Even after Tamim Iqbal's career-best score boosted Bangladesh to a huge total of 322 for six, the hosts managed to win the second ODI by the skin of their teeth as Zimbabwe fought till the end but fell short by just four runs and surrendered the three-match series 2-0 at the Sylhet International Stadium yesterday.
Needing 20 off the last over, Donald Tiripano struck two sixes off pacer AL-Amin Hossain and perhaps celebrated too early when reaching his fifty as Zimbabwe required six runs off the last two balls.
Al-Amin however managed to calm his nerves and restricted Tiripano and sealed a nerve-wracking win for the hosts.
But it was Tamim who stole the show after he struck his 12th ODI hundred and was dismissed for 158 off 136 balls, which featured 20 fours and three sixes. The left-hander reached quite a few milestones as he registered the highest individual score by a Bangladeshi in the format, surpassing his own previous best of 154 against the same opponents in Bulawayo.
The 30-year-old also became the only Bangladesh batsman to reach 7,000 ODI runs yesterday and, more importantly, Tamim brushed aside all the criticism against his batting approach in recent times.
Bangladesh made two changes from the first ODI, with all-rounder Mohammad Saifuddin and pacer Mustafizur Rahman being rested and pacers Al-Amin and Shafiul Islam taking their place as the hosts opted to bat on a flat track.
Tamim, who has been under a lot of pressure due to indifferent form since the start of last summer's World Cup, showed encouraging signs of a return to normalcy and started off confidently.
Bangladesh got off to a decent start as the openers added 38 runs before the centurion of the last match, Liton Das, departed for nine after a rather unlucky run out when Tamim's straight drive deflected off bowler Carl Mumba's hand and hit the stumps at the non-striker's end with Liton outside the crease.
Nazmul Hossain Shanto was also run out after a mix-up with Tamim but even that could not hold back the experienced batsman as he added 87 for the third wicket with Mushfiqur Rahim.
Tamim reached his fifty off 42 deliveries and was all set to score a big knock, but Mushfiqur -- who also scored a fifty -- departed after going for a six against off-spinner Wesley Madhevere.
The left-handed batsman, who was watchful in the nineties, eventually reached his century off 106 deliveries. Mahmudullah Riyad at the other end departed after scoring 41 after a 106-runs fourth-wicket stand.
The cricketer from Chattogram, opened up further after reaching his hundred and smashed the Zimbabwean bowlers all over the park before holing out in the deep after a magnificent knock.
Bangladesh were all set to post over 350 but the absence of a big hitter like Saifuddin in the end cost the hosts as they added just 25 runs in the last four overs. Mohammad Mithun added a quick 32 off 18 deliveries and remained unbeaten.
Zimbabwe, in reply, once again failed to provide a solid start, lost early wickets and were struggling on 102 for four after opener Tinashe Kamunhukamwe departed for fifty.
Fifties from Wesley Madhevere and Sikandar Raza in the middle kept Zimbabwe in the hunt before Tiripano blasted a 28-ball 55 and, along with Mutombodzi's quick 34, took the game to the wire.