Bangladesh delivered the final blow in the UCB five-One-Day International (ODI) series after beating hosts Zimbabwe by 97 runs at Queens Sports Club on Sunday to leave the series result at a respectable 3-2.
Zimbabwe’s Keegan Meth suffered a nasty blow himself when he was hit on the mouth and lost three teeth with the last ball of the Bangladesh innings off Nasir Hossain’s bat.
Brian Vitori, who was again rested on Sunday, was named man-of-the-series after taking eleven wickets in the first three ODIs which Zimbabwe won.
Brendan Taylor had won the toss and put the tourists in to bat after Kyle Jarvis had been replaced by Meth.
The tourists then put in 252 runs on the board to set up an asking test for Zimbabwe’s batters, one that they failed.
Zimbabwe’s run chase got off to a disastrous start when they lost Taylor for a duck in the second over when he edged one to the keeper Mushfiqur Rahim off Rubel Hossain in front of a good crowd.
But Vusi Sibanda and Hamilton Masakadza set about to chip away at the target in entertaining fashion particularly from the former who perished on 34 from 44 balls attempting another big hit off Shakib Al Hasan who caught Imrul Kayes having hit five fours and two sixes.
Things then continued to slide downhill when Masakadza was trapped leg before by Abdur Razzak for 28 leaving Zimbabwe at 73-3 and Tatenda Taibu was soon to follow after befalling the same fate, but at the bowling of Shakib having scored seven runs.
Foster Mutizwa had a chance to show his worth, but he put that to waste losing his wicket through a run out for 28 while Malcolm Waller (51) gave ample reason to be considered next time with a half century.
Zimbabwe then lost five wickets for 20 runs to end on 160 in 38,2 overs. Earlier Bangladesh’s start was not particularly bright too, facing Chris Mpofu and Meth with the openers Tamim Iqbal and Imrul Kayes playing with caution.
But Kayes (9) soon fell to Meth caught behind for Zimbabwe’s breakthrough to reduce the tourists to 30-1, yet still they went on the offensive with Tamim.
Elton Chigumbura got Mohammed Ashraful when he induced a lick straight into Taibu’s gloves.
The all-rounder was then involved in Tamim’s dismissal who attempted to sweep Raymond Price lifting it to as far as Chigumbura for a well played 65-ball 45 which was laced with five boundaries leaving the tourists at 79-3.
Rahim Mushfiqur (20) attempted a sweep, but was undone by Price’s trickery, who this time combined with Sibanda.
With wickets falling at that rate the tourists were in danger of failing to put enough runs on the board and on that evidence it looked like Zimbabwe could finally pay back the fans.
When Price struck again in the 30th over to take out Shuvagoto Hom for just three runs that notion was increasingly gaining credibility with the tourists limping on 127-5.
Yet captain Shakib Al Hasan and Mohammad Mahmudullah set about to repair the innings and put in a useful stand of 107 which was broken by Meth when he clean bowled the former for 79 off 71 balls.
The important job had been done and Bangladesh has something to bowl at with Mahmudullah getting a half tone.
Price retained the best figures for Zimbabwe with 3-51 while Meth had 2-56.