Bangladesh Targeting SA after a Thrilling Two-Wicket Win Over Sri Lanka

The Bangladesh Men’s T20 team didn’t seem confident at all entering the T20 World Cup 2024 league matches as their preparation was seriously questioned for some shocking defeats against Zimbabwe, a team that couldn’t even qualify for the World Cup, and the USA, who are going to take part for the first time in history.

Moreover, being in Group D, Bangladesh is in a fight with South Africa, Netherlands, Nepal, and their Asian rivalry Sri Lanka to be in the top two. Under such a scenario, Bangladesh managed to beat Sri Lanka in a low-scoring thriller to put one step in the Super 8 and send the Lankan Lions to the bottom of the table!

A fight for Survival Both for Bangladesh and Sri Lanka

Both Bangladesh and Sri Lanka were under immense pressure before the match; Sri Lanka for losing their first match against South Africa by a huge margin and Bangladesh for their poor form in recent times. Especially, the inconsistency of the top-order batters was a serious concern for Bangladesh.

It was a must-win match for Sri Lanka to bounce back in the tournament which made it mandatory for them to put an all-out effort to capitalize on the weaknesses of Bangladesh. As South Africa, with tremendous form and superior position in ranking is assumed to be the obvious one out of two to move to Super 8 from this group, both Bangladesh and Sri Lanka are in toe to toe fight to book the rest of one place!

Apart from this, the Bangladesh vs Sri Lanka rivalry has been on another level in recent times which started with the Nidahas Trophy in 2018 and continued every occasion where these two met; instigated even further with the Timeout controversy in the 2023 ODI World Cup.

The social media was flooded with the debate of fans from these two countries. It was 6:30 AM in Bangladesh and 6:00 AM in Sri Lanka, fans woke up with their previously set alarm and sat in front of the TV screen with extreme excitement.

Sri Lanka’s Low Score On The Board

After winning the toss, Bangladesh skipper Shanto invited Sri Lanka to bat first which turned out to be a backfire initially as SL got a steady start with Pathum Nissanka and K. Mendis at the top. However, Taskin, with a dreamy return after suffering from injury, broke the partnership. Yet, Shakib’s failure to keep the momentum cost 30 runs in only 3 overs.

However, Sri Lanka couldn’t keep the scoreboard running. Based on Pathum Nissanka’s 47 runs of 28 balls, Sri Lanka was hoping for a good total. Yet, it was hampered by the amazing bowling attack of Bangladesh. The performance of Rishad Hossain, the newly joined leg spinner of Bangladesh, amazed the crowd with the 3 wickets in the first World Cup match!

Mustafizur Rahman, the experienced campaigner, also contributed with another 3 wickets and brilliant bowling spending only 17 runs. Thus, a promising innings of Sri Lanka ended with only 123 runs, a license to the Bangladesh batters to play slowly forgetting the aggressiveness of modern T20 cricket!

Bangladesh’s Struggle to Chase

What was supposed to be an easy chase, Bangladesh’s began disastrously! Soumya Sarkar, another innings without scoring with an edge to Dhananjaya de Silva to mid-on. The situation got worsened when in-form batter Tanzid Tamim went for only 3 of 6 balls! Liton with Shanto, the captain was looking for a partnership and that too did not go in favor of Bangladesh as Shanto again failed to contribute and was dismissed after scoring only 7 of 13 balls.

After this miserable start, the Bangladesh fans were tensed and afraid of another batting collapse. Just when the hope seemed to dwindle, a crucial 63-run partnership between the young talent Towhid Hridoy (40 off 20 balls) and Liton Das (36 off 38 balls) steadied the ship. Liton’s patience and cautious short selection have to be appreciated considering the match situation as well as his off-form.

Hridoy, showcasing his fearless approach, smashed four sixes, three of them coming in a breathtaking display off consecutive deliveries against Wanindu Hasaranga. This aggressive knock was again stumbled with the dismissal of Hridoy immediately after hitting those sixes. 

Turning Point and Drama

At 91-3 in the twelfth over, Bangladesh seemed to have the upper hand. However, the dismissal of Liton Das after Towhid Hridoy triggered a dramatic collapse. Sri Lankan speed star Nuwan Thushara had an extraordinary spell, taking four wickets in quick succession at the expense of only 18 runs, including two in two balls.

Shakib, again frustrated the supporters with batting, scored only 8 of 14 balls and then caught in the safe hands of Mahees Thishana leaving a question, was this attacking shot necessary at all? Rishad too could not continue with Mahmudullah to end the inning. As a result, with two overs remaining, Bangladesh found themselves precariously positioned at 113-8, needing 12 runs to win.

Bangladesh Clinch the Victory

The veteran all-rounder, Mahmudullah Riyad (16*), held his nerve for Bangladesh on more time. In a crucial moment, he clobbered a six off the first ball of the 19th over, bowled by Dasun Shanaka, easing the tension significantly. With just two deliveries left, Riyad steered his team home with a cool head, sparking wild celebrations in the Bangladeshi dugout.

Now, Tigers Are Looking to Hunt South Africa

Starting the tournament with a win is something every team looks for. As Sri Lanka is in big trouble, is one step ahead towards Super 8. Things to remember is that the Netherlands was about to win against South Africa where the proteas lost 4 wickets for only 12 while chasing a low total of 103 indicating no match is going to be easier!

Bangladesh needs to take everything into account and set its strategy to play against the mighty South Africa. They are now in a bit more comfortable position. Even if they get defeated against South Africa on 10th June, they can get back with wins against Netherlands and Nepal. However, the Tigers are for sure targeting two points from the 10th June match to secure their spot in the Super 8.


The win is supposed to be an event of restoring confidence for the Bangladesh Men’s cricket team. The fans are also expressing their cheerfulness through social media posts. Yet, it’s worth mentioning that Bangladesh missed the chance to increase their NRR even after getting such a low total to chase. When the bowling unit has done their job except only one expensive one from Shakib, the temperament of the batters is again under question even after winning the match. Thus, it’s time for Bangladesh to keep the momentum and work on the areas of improvement. Sri Lanka, on the other hand, needs to pray for other results to go in their favor. When South Africa is in much comfort after winning 2 consecutive matches, the Bangladesh vs Netherlands match is going to be crucial for both two teams. Let’s see how things go on and which teams finally qualify for Super 8!


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