Bangladesh wasted an opportunity to end their winless streak in South Africa when they suffered a 20-run defeat in the first Twenty20 international in Bloemfontein on Thursday.
In their first day-night game of the tour, the Tigers restricted South Africa to 195-4 and reached 97-2 in 10 overs to give the hosts some scare before they finished with 175-9.Chasing a record total, Bangladesh lost opener Imrul Kayes for 10 but Soumya Sarkar and Sakib al Hasan batted in a positive manner to keep them firmly in the contest.
Robert Frylinck got the bottom edge of Sakib to force him giving a catch to AB de Villiers at long on after the left hander scored 13 off eight balls.
Mushfiqur Rahim swept JP Duminy over the midwicket for a six and Soumya charged left-arm spinner Aron Phaingiso down the wicket for another six in the next over to frustrate South Africa.
The hosts finally got a sniff once they successfully reviewed an initial not out decision against Soumya to end his 47-run innings, which came off 31 balls and two sixes.
Bangladesh soon lost Mushfiq (13) and Mahmudullah (three) to finally lose their grip on the match.
Sabbir Rahman struck two sixes but chased a ball wide outside the off-stump to depart for 19 ending Bangladesh’s remaining hopes. Saifuddin made unbeaten 39 in vain.
Earlier, South Africa threatened to take the game beyond Bangladesh’s reach when Quinton de Kock and de Villiers put 79 runs for the second wicket after their captain Duminy won the toss and opted to bowl first.
Bangladesh took four seamers in the game but opened the innings with two spinners to get a surprising result as Mehedi Hasan bowled Hashim Amla with a quicker in his first over.
New Twenty20 skipper Sakib removed himself and Mehedi from the attack after one over each to give the pace bowlers a chance to bowl.
But de Kock and de Villiers showed no respect to anyone, prompting Sakib to opt for slow bowlers again.
De Villiers top-edged Mehedi to depart for 49 while Sakib removed Duminy to put a brake on South Africa’s scoring spree.
Rubel Hossain came back to bowl an outstanding 15th over in which he conceded only three runs and took the wicket of de Kock, who made highest 59 runs off 44 balls for the hosts.
David Miller (25 off 19) and Farhaan Behardien (36 off 17) regained the initiative for South Africa by adding an unbeaten 62 runs in the last five overs.
-With New Age input