By BV Swagath
Bangladesh prevailed by just the one run in yesterday’s second T20I against hosts Ireland at Belfast to clinch the 3-match series 2-0. The third and final match of the series will be played today at the same venue.
Batting first after winning the toss, Bangladesh were restricted to 146 for 6. Nasir Hossain was the top scorer with an unbeaten 50 from 33 balls with 4 fours and 2 sixes which would get him the Player of the Match award. Former Skipper Mohammad Ashraful, who opened the innings, contributed 38 from 46 balls with 2 fours. For the Irish, veteran medium pacer Trent Johnston bowled well for his 1 for 20 in 4 overs.
Ireland in their run chase fell short by a whisker at 145 for 6 in 20 overs. Ireland needing 10 runs to win from the final over were outsmarted by off-spinner Mahmudullah who made it tough by taking two wickets including that of the well set Ed Joyce (41 from 44 balls). The equation before Joyce got out was 8 runs from two balls. The final ball of the innings was struck for a six by Trent Johnston but it wasn’t enough for the Irish to clinch a victory. Once again it was left-arm spinner Elias Sunny standing out amongst the bowlers with figures of 4-0-18-2 while Mahmudullah deserved the credit for holding his nerve when it really mattered.