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Campbell impresses on début but Zimbabwe still go down

Zimbabwe – 138-7 in 20 overs (Johnathan Campbell 45, Brian Bennett 44*, Joylord Gumbie 17; Taskin Ahmed 2/18, Rishad Hossain 2/33, Mahedi Hasan 1/18)

Bangladesh – 142-4 in 18.2 overs (Towhid Hridoy 37*, Mahmudullah 26*, Litton Das 23; Luke Jongwe 2/35, Ainsley Ndlovu 1/25, Richard Ngarava 1/32)

Bangladesh won by six wickets

Thanks to a notable international début by Johnathan Campbell, who played a brilliant innings of 45 off only 24 balls, Zimbabwe were able to make Bangladesh fight for their eventual six-wicket victory in the second Twenty20 international match between the teams at Chattogram this Sunday.

The all-rounder – although he did not get to bowl – is the son of former Zimbabwe captain Alistair Campbell.

Bangladesh again won the toss and put the visitors in to bat.

The batters struggled for runs from the start, only seven coming off the first three overs, and then the wickets began to fall as the pressure mounted.

Tadiwanashe Marumani went for two, while his opening partner Joylord Gumbie struggled to score 17 off 30 balls.

After eight overs the score was only 36 for two, and then Sikandar Raza, trying to take command, sliced a catch to deep point for four off eight balls.

Two deliveries later the new man, Clive Madande, was caught to make it four wickets down.

Craig Ervine never looked fluent, and Zimbabwe’s gloom deepened as he was caught in the deep for 13, the score then being 42 for five in the 11th over.

At this point Campbell joined Brian Bennett at the wicket and almost immediately the game began to change.

Campbell had a lucky escape on one as he skyed a hit towards square leg, which was dropped by the wicket-keeper.

He decided that attack was the best policy, and two overs later hit a four and a six in three balls from Shoriful Islam.

Bennett decided to join the party, and the two hit out boldly to add 73 runs in seven overs before Campbell was deprived of a debutant fifty when he tried to reach it with a six and was caught near the midwicket boundary.

His 45 runs came off 24 balls and included three sixes and four fours – the score had improved to 115 for six in the 18th over after a partnership worth 73 in seven overs.

Bennett was not out at the end of the innings with 44 off 29 balls, with three sixes and two fours.

The total was 138 for seven wickets, certainly far more than what had looked likely when Campbell walked in.

The Bangladesh openers, Litton Das and Tanzid Hasan, made a confident start to the home side’s innings, scoring 34 without loss in 5.1 overs, before there was a brief rain break.

Four balls after the resumption Tanzid tried to pull a short ball from Ainsley Ndlovu over midwicket for six, but was well caught by Bennett near the boundary for 18 – 41 for one.

There was another rain break at 56 for one after 8.2 overs, and again it brought Zimbabwe a wicket on their return, as Najmul Hossain Shanto miscued a big hit to be caught at long-on for 16 – 61 for two.

It turned out to be two wickets, as three balls and one run later Das was caught at backward point off Luke Jongwe for 23, and the rain returned again before the new man could come in.

When they resumed yet again, Zimbabwe took a little longer to get a wicket, but Jaker Ali found himself in quite the wrong position when he was bowled by a good ball from Richard Ngarava for 13, making it 93 for four after 14 overs, which left 45 more runs still needed in six overs.

Unfortunately for Zimbabwe, there was to be no more rain and there were no more wickets.

Towhid Hridoy was again there at the finish with 37 not out, scored off 25 balls, partnered at the end by Mahmudullah, whose unbeaten 26 came off 16 balls.

Jongwe with two wickets for 35 runs off his four overs was the most successful bowler for Zimbabwe.