Kagiso Rabada left Bangladesh stunned with a hat-trick on debut to set up a crushing eight-wicket win for South Africa in the rain-hit first one-day international in Dhaka on Friday. Rabada ripped hearts out of the Tigers’ batting line up to finish with 6-16, the best ever haul by a debutant, which helped the Proteas book Bangladesh cheaply for 160 runs in 36.3 overs.Against an opponent like South Africa it would prove too small a score to defend on any surface, and Bangladesh’s bowlers unsurprisingly failed to do so.
South Africa coasted with eight wickets and 53 balls in hand as they reached 164-2, thanks to an unbeaten 63 off 75 balls from Faf du Plessis and 45 not out from Rilee Rossouw.
Skipper Mashrafee bin Murtaza and Nasir Hossain brought some consolation for Bangladesh when they dismissed Hashim Amla (14) and Quinton de Kock (35) respectively.
South Africa however should thank Bangladesh’s ground staff for making the surface usable, after it looked like the game would be washed out following heavy downpour.
Rain receded in the afternoon and the groundsmen did wonders to make at least a 40-over-a-side possible.
Mashrafee won a very good toss and opted to bat first, which was not debated until Rabada started producing wickets one after another.
Rabada justified his selection ahead of experienced Morne Morkel, striking with the third ball of his second over when he sent the off-stump of opener Tamim Iqbal cart-wheeling.
He then made one-down Liton Das offer a low catch to Farhaan Behardien at midwicket and trapped Mahmudullah leg-before in his next two deliveries to complete the hat-trick.
Rabada now joined Bangladesh’s Taijul Islam to claim a hat-trick on debut after the left-arm spinner achieved the similar feat against Zimbabwe at the same ground in December.
The 20-year-old pacer later dismissed the other opener Soumya Sarkar (27) before Sakib al Hasan and Mushfiqur Rahim provided a brief resistance for Bangladesh with 53-run fifth wicket stand.
‘It’s great to just do well for your team and put them in a good position and we won comfortably in the end,’ Rabada said after the match.
‘I didn’t know what to bowl when I was on hat-trick – maybe bouncer, then yorker but I missed it by a mile.’
‘It was a bit of a fluke, but I’ll take it. It’s important to keep the game simple, keep the batsmen guessing and hit good line and length and guess what the batsmen are trying to do.’
‘We have one of the best teams in the world and you’d be stupid to not be part of this team, we have a wonderful environment.’
Sakib scored highest 48 for the Tigers, facing 51 balls, while Mushfiq added 24, but they could do very little to unnerve South Africa. They fell to the spin of Imran Tahir and JP Duminy respectively when Rabada was taking a break from bowling.
Rabada returned in his second spell to add the wickets of Mashrafee and Jubair Hossain to his tally in successive overs, shattering the best ODI debut wicket-taking record, held by West Indies’ Fidel Edwards, who claimed 6-22 against Zimbabwe in 2003.
Nasir Hossain provided some late spark to score 31 off 44 balls to give Bangladesh’s innings a decent look before Chris Morris bowled him to finish with 2-32.
The second and third ODI of the three-match series will be held on July 12 and 15 respectively in Dhaka and Chittagong.
-With New Age input