Zia bowls Tigers to victory

Medium pacer Ziaur Rahman picked up his maiden five-wicket haul to lead Bangladesh to a crushing 121-run win over Zimbabwe in the first one-day international of the three-match series at Bulawayo’s Queens Sports Club on Friday.
Zia, playing only his second ODI, claimed 5-30 to wreak havoc on Zimbabwe’s batting line-up, dismissing them for 148 runs in 32.1 overs after the Tigers, sent in to bat first, put on a modest 269-8.
Pace bowler Shafiul Islam caused an early damage by picking up two wickets on his return to the national team after recovering from his toe injury before Zimbabwe seemed to lift the innings as Hamilton Masakadza and captain Brendan Taylor put on 65 runs in their third-wicket stand.
But just when the pair appeared to put the Tigers on the back foot, experienced left-arm spinner Abdur Razzak broke the partnership by removing Taylor with his arm-ball for 33 to bring the tourists back into the game.
It also provided the opportunity for skipper Mushfiqur Rahim to introduce Zia, who eventually turned the game in Tigers’ favour as he picked up wickets at regular intervals, making him the third Bangladeshi pace bowlers to take five wickets in ODIs after Mashrafee bin Murtaza and Aftab Ahmed.
Zia began his demolition act by removing in-form Hamilton with a delivery that swung in from outside the off-stump and hit him in front to be adjudged lbw for 38 from 53 balls that also gave them a hope of winning the game.
Zia, who had a fairly decent performance with the ball, failed with the bat against Sri Lanka in his debut ODI series last month, putting his place in the ODI side in doubt before he put in a fine performance in the last Test to take four wickets that earned him another chance in the one-day team.
When Zia dismissed the last dangerman Elton Chigumbura for no score it was all but over for the Zimbabwean side making it a matter of time for the Tigers to seal the fate of the match to show their excellent one-day form.
Earlier despite a brief middle-order collapse, the Tigers piled up a modest total after in-form Nasir Hossain rescued them by scoring his fifth half-century, making 68 from 67 balls and helping his team post 269-8.
Bangladesh were struggling at 94-4, before Nasir came in to bat and along with Mominul Haque (38) added 76 runs for the fifth wicket to give them a solid platform that was well used by the lower-order batsmen.
Vice-captain Mahmudullah, who was dropped for the last Test, came back strongly making 38 runs and guiding the tail-enders when Nasir departed after holing out a catch  at deep point to Waller.
Bangladesh skipper Mushfiqur Rahim was happy to start the one-day series on a winning note and thanked all his performers for their contributions.
‘Always happy with such wins. It is an important match because this is the series opener,’ said Mushfiq.
‘We lost a few wickets, but Nasir, Mominul and Mahmudullah batted really well. Shows Nasir is in good form. It is a pleasure to play with him. He and Mominul built a crucial partnership,’ said Mushfiq.
‘Shafiul took early wickets, and we knew it was a matter of one or two wickets when they got that partnership going. And Zia bowled superbly,’ he added.
Medium pacer Zia added that he reaped the benefit of following the basic and bowling straight.
‘First of all I thank Allah. I was looking to bowl straight, just bowl line and length,’ said Zia.
‘Everybody supported me. Beautiful country. I am enjoying the stay here,’ he added.
Bangladesh will play the second ODI at the same venue on Sunday.
First ODI
Bangladesh 269-8 in 50 overs (N Hossain 68, M Haque 38, Mahmudullah 36, T Iqbal 31, M Ashraful 29; S Masakadza 4-51, T Chatara 2-52) v Zimbabwe 148 in 32.1 overs (H Masakadza 38, S Masakadza 33, B Taylor 33; Z Rahman 5-30, S Islam 2-39)
Result: Bangladesh won by 121 runs.
Man of the match: Z Rahman (BNG)
Best Bowling for Tigers in odis
P     O     M     R     W     O     G    Y
Mashrafee Murtaza     10.0     0     26     6      Kenya     Nairobi     2006
Abdur Razzak     9.2     0     29     5     Zimbabwe     Dhaka     2009
Abdur Razzak     9.2     2     30     5     Zimbabwe     Dhaka     2010
Ziaur Rahman     9.0     1     30     5     Zimbabwe     Bulawayo     2013
Aftab Ahmed     10.0     0     31     5     New Zealand     Dhaka     2004

-With New Age input

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