Sarkar, Sabbir wickets turned chase, says Mashrafe

Sabbir Rahman made 48 before holing out © AFP

Bangladesh captain Mashrafe Mortaza has said the quick fall of Soumya Sarkar and Sabbir Rahman – the set batsmen – cost the side in a chase of 196 in Mount Maunganui. Sarkar and Sabbir added 68 off 40 balls for the fourth wicket before both batsmen exited in a space of 10 balls. The double-strike triggered another Bangladesh collapse, this time they lost their last seven wickets for 44 runs and lurched to a 47-run defeat.

“We were hopeful after they made 195,” Mashrafe said. “We were batting positively after losing three early wickets. We were on course to the target but lost the last seven wickets far too quickly.

“They [New Zealand] made 15 extra runs at this ground where 180 is a par score. We had two set batsmen chasing well. So when they got out, the match got out of our reach. We did create chances with the ball by taking three early wickets but we didn’t attack with the wind and then defend when the batsmen were hitting down wind.”

Although Sarkar’s wicket contributed to the slide, he briefly found form with 39 off 26 balls, including three fours and two sixes, after scores of 0 and 1 in his last two innings. In fact, it was Sarkar’s first 30-plus score in international cricket since March last year. Mashrafe termed Sarkar’s effort as a “positive sign” but rued the lost opportunity.

“He [Sarkar] is back in runs after some time, so he must also be feeling better,” Mashrafe said. “But he lost an opportunity to make a big score. It would have helped us because he was playing their pace well.”

While Bangladesh struggled to come to come to terms with the wind, Colin Munro used it an ally to hammer seven sixes during his 52-ball century.

“Munro didn’t start off with his shots early because they had lost three early wickets,” Mashrafe said. “Munro was constantly targeting to hit down wind. We couldn’t stop him from doing that. We knew his style of batting. He got out off the first ball in the last game. We failed to take advantage of the opportunity we created ourselves. I don’t think it has anything to do with Munro or anyone. We have the ability to keep creating opportunities but we should capitalise on it.”

Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo’s Bangladesh correspondent. @isam84

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Source: ESPN Crickinfo

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