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SYLHET, Bangladesh – Bangladesh recorded their biggest-ever win in ODI cricket as they beat Ireland by 183 runs in the first match of the series in Sylhet.
In a dominant all-round display from the hosts, Ireland was bowled out for 155 after Bangladesh had scored 338-8 batting first (their highest-ever score in men’s ODIs).
Shakib Al Hasan and Towhid Hridoy put on a 135-run stand for the fourth wicket, but both fell to Graham Hume within ten runs of individual centuries. Hume went on to take his career-best figures in ODI cricket, claiming 4-60 in only his fifth match in the format. An excellent spell after the powerplay from Bangladesh put paid to Ireland’s hopes of enacting their highest-ever successful run-chase to win the match.
After electing to bowl first, Ireland got off to a good start when Mark Adair snared Tamim Iqbal in his second over. With Curtis Campher and Andy McBrine chipping in to dismiss Litton Das and Najmul Hossain Shanto respectively, Ireland was well amongst them, with Bangladesh still yet to reach the hundred mark in the 20th over.
But Shakib soon found his rhythm and began to reach the boundary. After he brought up his fifty from 65 balls, he cut loose in the 35th over with five fours in the over. As Shakib unleashed his carnage from one end, Hridoy matched him blow for a blow from the other. He scored his maiden ODI fifty off 55 balls and dealt a hefty blow to Hume a few balls later, smashing a maximum down the ground.
Even with Shakib dismissed by a yorker in that same over, there was no relief for the Ireland bowlers. Mushfiqur hit a 26-ball 44 with seven boundaries to push Bangladesh past 300. Once Hume prized him out and castled Hridoy two balls later, cameos from Taskin Ahmed, and Yasir Ali gave Bangladesh their record total.
Stirling and Doheny’s watchful start was in vain as Ireland stuttered after the powerplay. They lost five wickets for 16 runs after the 11th over – with all of their top order back in the hutch.
Campher and Dockrell gave those watching back at home some hope, steadying the ship with a promising partnership before Campher was trapped in front by Nasum Ahmed. Ahmed then ripped through Gareth Delany and McBrine in consecutive deliveries, pinning Delany lbw and tempting McBrine to flick at a legside delivery, the keeper Rahim taking a fine catch.
Dockrell was the last wicket to fall for an admirable 45 off 47 balls. He was bowled by a 142 kph yorker from Hossain, which crashed into his leg stump, ending the innings in the 31st over.
Ireland will need a victory in the second match on Monday to stay in the series.
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