Hosts keep semifinal hopes alive
Shamim Hossain and Prantik Nawroz Nabil hit half centuries after a fine bowling effort to help Bangladesh bounce back from defeat in their Under-19 Asia Cup opener with a three-wicket win against Pakistan at the Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium in Chattogram yesterday.
This victory kept their hopes for a semifinal berth alive after their six-wicket loss to Sri Lanka and now, the young Tigers need to beat Hong Kong by a large margin in their last Group B fixture today to advance.
"Though we won today's match, we have a big task on our hands as we need to beat Hong Kong by a huge margin," said Bangladesh skipper Towhid Hridoy, referring to their heavy defeat in the tournament opener.
With big-margin wins in their respective opening matches, Pakistan and Sri Lanka will face off in the other Group B encounter today.
Hridoy also added: "We could have won the match in a much better position if Shamim did not leave with cramps due to the scorching heat."
Chasing 187, the hosts made yet another disastrous start following their forlorn batting against Sri Lanka as they lost three wickets for 42 runs. But Shamim joined Prantik to repair the damage and contributed 97 runs for fourth wicket.
Prantik was dismissed on 58 runs off 93 balls, featuring four boundaries, while Shamim scored 65 off 105 balls, which included five fours and two sixes, before leaving the field.
Bangladesh suffered another mini collapse in the game but Akbar Ali played a vital knock of 17 not out off 31 balls laced with two fours.
Earlier, pacer Shoriful Islam bowled brilliantly and got good support from promising leg-spinner Rishad Hossain to wrap up Pakistan's innings on 187 runs after the home side opted to field.
Shoriful picked up two wickets for 20 runs in 8.2 overs while Rishad scalped three wickets, however, the latter was expensive in giving away 53 runs in 8 overs.
In the day's other match, Afghanistan beat Nepal by three wickets in a Group A fixture at the BKSP
SCORES IN BRIEF
PAKISTAN: 187 all out in 45.2 overs (Saim 49, Waqar 67, Junaid 24; Shoriful 20, Rishad 3-53)
BANGLADESH: 191 for 7 in 47.2 overs (Sajid 21, Prantik 58, Shamim 65 retired hurt, Akbar 17 not out; Musa 3-24)
Result: Bangladesh Under-19s won by three wickets.