Bangladesh made history by winning the third T20I by 11 races, taking an unassailable lead and sealing their first-ever series victory against Australia in Dhaka on Friday August 6th.
The hosts held their nerves and performed superbly on a slow wicket, limiting Australia to 117/4 in a low scoring thriller. The win helped them take a 3-0 lead in the five-game series. It is also their first series which seduces visitors through the formats.
Having been invited to play first, Australia couldn’t have asked for a better start in third T20I in Dhaka.
Josh Hazlewood allowed Mohammad Naim to snatch one from Matthew Wade on the last ball of the second. From the next ball, Soumya Sarkar missed a sweep from Adam Zampa and got stuck in front of stumps.
Bangladesh’s two most experienced players, Shakib Al Hasan and Mahumudullah, came together to make sure they didn’t lose any more wickets in Powerplay, beating cautiously to bring the score to 28/2 at the end of six overs. It looked like the two were ready to go after scoring three goals on Mitchell Marsh, but a good long-term running catch from Ashton Agar ended Shakib’s innings.
Mahmudullah was solid on one side but continued to lose partners on the other. In a space of 22 balls, Bangladesh lost three more wickets, two of which were run-outs. Australia played smart on a slow Shere-e-Bangla track to keep a leash on the scoring.
The skipper completed his 50s in the 20th but took 52 balls to get there. Nathan Ellish had an unforgettable game becoming the first player in T20I history to record a hattrick in his debut, scalping Mahmudullah, Mustafizur Rahman and Mahedi Hasan on the last three balls of the innings. Bangladesh finished their heats at 127/9.
Australia got off to a bad start, losing Matthew Wade in the second half when Nasum Ahmed caught him in a short, thin leg for 1. Mitchell Marsh then joined Ben McDermott in the crease. Marsh survived a missed call on 2 when he reviewed successfully. He was then abandoned on an 8 on the seventh round by Ahmed’s keeper and then hit a four and a six on the same round.
McDermott latched onto one end as Marsh began to play his shots, jumping on the wrong balls. The duo raised their stand for half a century and continued to milk the races and operate the dashboard. At 69/1 in 13 overs, Australia looked in a solid position but things turned once again for the visitors.
Shakib was brought in on offense and the all-round veteran immediately made an impact, knocking McDermott out for a 41-ball 35, breaking the 68-point stand. Shoriful Islam immediately got Moises Henriques (2) in the next match to put the pressure back on Australia.
However, with Marsh in the bottom of the wave, things looked promising for visitors. The persistent batsman became the first Australian player to score a fifty in the series. But his charge was interrupted by Shoriful, who caught him on the first ball of the 18th.
With Marsh gone, Alex Carey sought to maintain the score rate. However, despite some stray limits, bowlers in Bangladesh kept things tight. Mustafizur allowed just one point in the penultimate, leaving Australia 22 to win the last.
Despite Carey’s six on the first ball, Mahedi kept his cool, giving only singles and ultimately limiting the visitors to 117/4.