To call Bangladesh a one-man team would be a cruel injustice, but it is difficult to overstate the importance of Shakib Al Hasan in keeping their World Cup hopes alive in Taunton on Monday and all but ending West Indies’ in the process.
How many other players can legitimately lay claim to being both their country’s best bowler and best batsman? For Shakib is Bangladesh’s true global superstar.
Marshalled by their talisman’s brilliant unbeaten century, this seven-wicket victory was extraordinary. Not only did it feature Bangladesh’s highest ever successful run chase – and the second highest in all World Cup history – to make astonishingly light work of their 322-run target, but it left a previously buoyant West Indies side totally and utterly broken.
Captain Jason Holder is correct in his assertion that “it’s not impossible” to still make the semi-finals but the chances are incredibly slim. Even victory in their four remaining group matches may not be enough and there is the added fact that their next two games are against the only unbeaten sides in the tournament: New Zealand and India.
For Bangladesh the dream remains alive and to an overwhelming extent they have Shakib to thank for that. More than halfway through the World Cup group stage, he stands clear at the top of the runscorer charts with this stunning 124 not out following scores of 75, 64 and 121 in his previous three games. All the more remarkable is that he has bowled 38 overs during that time and took two more key wickets on Monday. The world’s greatest all-rounder is only getting better.
On this occasion he was aided by the unlikely figure of Liton Das. Selected for the first time in this tournament, Liton produced the innings of his life, nudging and nurdling to support his senior partner early on before freeing his arms as the victory target rushed into sight.
By the time he struck the hapless Shannon Gabriel for three successive sixes, the predominantly Bangladesh-supporting crowd were well into their ecstasy-induced fervour. The pair’s 189-run partnership was the highest of the World Cup so far and it seemed unfair there were not enough runs needed to allow Liton to reach three figures, instead ending unbeaten on 94. Sealing victory with 8.3 overs to spare, there is no telling how far Bangladesh could have gone in their full complement.
“I’ve been contributing well with the bat, ball and leadership,” said Shakib. “It’s been key to our team. I’d love to continue.
“[This innings] will be one of my best because the way I paced the innings I was never in a rush. I didn’t have to play too many shots from good balls. I just had to be patient enough to put the bad ball away.”
Now up to fifth in the table, Bangladesh can continue to eye the knockout stage. For a humiliated West Indies side, it is impossible to see them even coming close.
With the benefit of hindsight, perhaps the bruising victory they inflicted on Pakistan in their opening match is to blame. That hostile, bouncer-inspired triumph had evoked memories of great West Indies pace attacks of the 1980s. But any comparisons have since died a brutal death.
As was the case in their hopeless defeat against England, their seamers wholly neglected any thought of containment in Taunton, repeatedly targeting the throat to no avail: short and pulled; short and cut; short and carved. Oh, for the line and length of an Ambrose or a Walsh. Their tally of 25 wides told a story of its own.
Sent in to bat under thick, grey clouds, they had earlier posted their highest team total of this tournament with an innings of typical unpredictability. In many ways it was peak West Indies.
At one extreme was an excruciating 13-ball duck where Chris Gayle barely deigned to play a shot and an unyielding, but tardy, 121-ball innings of 96 from Shai Hope, which prompted Holder to remark “he could have shown more intent”. That was something certainly not lacking in Shimron Hetmyer’s 25-ball 50, which equalled the fastest half-century of this World Cup.
Even with Holder later admitting his side were “40 or 50 runs short”, the feeling was that it would require something seriously special for Bangladesh to overhaul such a total. This was precisely that.
Bangladesh beat West Indies by seven wickets
That is a BRILLIANT win. Hugely enjoyable innings from the Bangladesh lads, Shakib magnificent. A wonderful unbeaten ton from the tournament's form man. West Indies were a) unlucky and b) terrible with the ball, and while you might just about get away with one of them, combine the two and this had turned into an absolute pasting. Windies were about 60-40 favourites at half time having posted 321 but have been well beaten by a superb batting effort.
OVER 41.3: BAN 322/3 (Shakib 124* Das 94*) chasing 322
Liton pulls a slower ball away for two, and then cracks a short delivery to the fence for four - and Bangladesh have done it!
OVER 41: BAN 316/3 (Shakib 124* Das 88*) chasing 322
Holder comes on, it's only a matter of time now I'm afraid Windies. And that time will be a bit shorter yet: two beefy pulls in this over skitter away for four. 11 off it.
OVER 40: BAN 305/3 (Shakib 123* Das 78*) chasing 322
Gabriel continues. Five off the over. 17 needed in the last 60 balls. This is going to be a superb win, the best chasing performance of the World Cup so far.
OVER 39: BAN 299/3 (Shakib 119* Das 76*) chasing 322
And Sheldon Cottrell's misery is complete. Das drills the ball back at him, sharp return chance and he has grassed it. He gets up and staggers over to the ball, in his rage he hacks at it with his foot a la Mikey Holding with the stumps in New Zealand. His misses. As is correct, Das now slots the next ball away for a boundary. Oh boy.
On the upside, Sheldon does at least have the satisfaction of seeing Das misjudge a slower ball bouncer and get hit, gently, on the side of the head.
OVER 38: BAN 294/3 (Shakib 118* Das 72*) chasing 322
Three sixes in a row to Litton Das off Gabriel - and three catches in the crowd.
First one, pulled to midwicket and nicely held. Next ball, gives himself room and lofts it down the ground, even better shot and an even better catch. Now he steps inside and sends the ball on its way again, it's snaffled at deep backward square by this lad below and the Bangladesh fans are going absolutely potty. Three sixes in three balls, will they go for it?
No. Das drives for a single to off. But Shakib wants in on the fun, Shakib has thick edged the ball for four. Windies have had no luck with nicks and edges, it's true. 24 runs off the over!
OVER 37: BAN 270/3 (Shakib 113* Das 53*) chasing 322
Cottrell. Wide in this over as well. And a Shakib Al Hasan lovely crisp clip for four.
OVER 36: BAN 264/3 (Shakib 109* Das 52*) chasing 322
It does not seem to be West Indies day. Certainly they look like they don't think it is their day. Shakib slaps at the ball with a flat bat, gets a top edge, it lands safe. Fielders standing around looking like they're wondering what's for tea.
Bouncer from Thomas. Wide. Bouncer from Thomas. Wide. This is awful. Windies lads on the bench slumped, looking in equal measure bored, irritated and resigned. A dreadful effort in the second half of the match. Shakib pours salt in the wound last ball with a classic straight drive four.
OVER 35: BAN 253/3 (Shakib 101* Das 51*) chasing 322
Nicely made fifty for Das here, the single for that one of five in the over.
OVER 34: BAN 248/3 (Shakib 100* Das 47*) chasing 322
Another man not loving life is Oshane Thomas, on for a new spell, and soon watching a top edge from Linton fly away safely for four. Thomas has the double teapot out and I cannot say I blame him.
And Shakib has reached a magnificent century with a cover drive that would grace any innings ever played by any batsman in any format. Imperious. Just a lovely shot. What a superb player, what a career.
74 needed from 96 balls
OVER 33: BAN 238/3 (Shakib 95* Das 42*) chasing 322
A change of bowler, a change of blogger, but no change of fortune for the West Indies, who are getting some tap here! Cottrell to Liton Das, good solid stuff to start with, now he tries for the bumper and Liton Das got under that and upercutted it for six. Dearie me! Now a cheeky dab from Das down to third man and Dre Russell limps round to field it, hobbling like an elderly geezer. He's having a bit of a tantrum, looks like the bowler or keeper or skipper or someone is also having a say so. Well if he's not fit he shouldn't be on.
Russell having a moan between overs to Umpire S Ravi: I cannot lipread what they are saying, but I can tell you that Ravi is making the international symbol for "so what? not my problem". Heh. Russell is looking absolutely fed up.
OVER 32: BAN 228/3 (Shakib 94* Das 33*) chasing 322
Das comes down the track to troll West Indies who had moved a man from cow corner to square midwicket. He advances on Gayle and chips it for four into the gap. Universe Boss merked. Das drives straight for a single, Shakib cuts for two, edges a drive wide for a single and then Das opens hois stance to rinse a cover drive for four. I'll return you to the capable hands of Mr Alan Tyers now.
OVER 31: BAN 215/3 (Shakib 92* Das 23*) chasing 322
Das pulls Holder and spoons it off the toe just over mid-on. They run a single, Shakib twists his wrists to work one through midwicket and though it barely goes 20m, it goes so slowly, deliberately, that they have time to sprint two. Bangladesh require 107 off 114 balls.
OVER 30: BAN 210/3 (Shakib 89* Das 21*) chasing 322
Chris Gayle into the attack after a delay for drinks. Dre Russ is back on but walking like a man with sore knees. Das whips a single off his pads. Shakib pushes one to long-on. As Ian Smith says, this is almost a last throw for West Indies. Gayle spears one down the legside that makeshift stumper Hope misses and Bangladesh gratefully receive five wides. Five singles and five 'sundries' - who needs to take risks?
OVER 29: BAN 200/3 (Shakib 87* Das 18*) chasing 322
Holder's bouncer flies off Shakib's toe-end, top-edge pull for a one-bounce four. Windies double teapot and transmit their suspicions that there's no justice. He has batted beautifully at times but also spawnily. Holder switches to a 7-2 offside field after Shakib steals a sharp single. Das dives home and then posts the 200 with a back-foot punch through point.
Bangladesh require 122 off 126 balls. 'Super effort, that.'
OVER 28: BAN 192/3 (Shakib 81* Das 16*) chasing 322
Shakib drives Gabriel down the ground for four, lifting his right elbow high to tonk it unstoppably past the bowler. Charming. Gabriel angles one across him from round the wicket and Shakib tickles it for four, provoking the bowler to seek revenge with a short one that Shakib pulls with a roll of those supple wrists for four through midwicket. A single off the last ball, cut hard through cover, takes him to 81 off 68 balls. West Indies are tediously one-dimensional and alarmingly inconsistent in their lines. They look fkat out there.
OVER 27: BAN 179/3 (Shakib 68* Das 16*) chasing 322
Holder brings himself back on and Shakib plays a remarkable stroke. He clears his front leg and hammers a good length ball off off-stump between the bowler and mid-on for four. They keep testing Shakib's cut stroke and he treats them to the umpteenth variation of it, a jabby dab, closing the blade to divert it through third man for a single. Today Shakib became the quickest ever player to 6,000 ODI runs and 200 wickets. What a class act he is.
This West Indies attack is dangerous on its day but it is also alarmingly one dimensional. Through this tournament no pace attack have bowled a higher percentage of short balls than them (58%) and no team has bowled a lower proportion of spin overs than them (7%). #CWC19— The CricViz Analyst (@cricvizanalyst) June 17, 2019
OVER 26: BAN 172/3 (Shakib 62* Das 15*) chasing 322
The Archangel proceeds by hammering the middle of the pitch, looking for a splice-jarring heaviness. It works effectively in keeping them down to three singles, a two and a wide. The two was earned by Das coming down the pitch and tapping a drive to the cover sweeper.
OVER 25: BAN 166/3 (Shakib 60* Das 12*) chasing 322
Russell continues and he works for the clampdown from his first five deliveries, going for only four singles but then tries the effort bouncer, pitches it too short and it trampolines over batsman and keeper for five wides. He winces in pain after delivering the extra ball and limps off. As said during the England v WI blog, he simply isn't fit enough for anything other than T20s.
OVER 24: BAN 157/3 (Shakib 58* Das 10*) chasing 322
Russell, worryingly, fell to the floor during his followthrough for about the fifth time in the World Cup so far. I'l tumble 4 ya. Mark Wood also has problems keeping his footing but with Russell it's a chronic knee injury and you wonder rather than bracing it, he lets it collapse rather than taking the pain of the impact with the effort ball. Only four come off Gabriel's over, two into the legside. Das is spooked by the pace and bounce, popping one up short of cover as he flapped to defend his nose, and chiselling out the yorker and sending it agonisingly close to his own stumps.
OVER 23 BAN 153/3 (Shakib 56* Das 8*) chasing 322
Shakib gets away with a top-edged hook. Gabriel from the fine leg boundary had the best opportunity but Hope raced back too as it landed 15m in from the rope. It was Gabriel's but Hope confused him and he was late to respond when it was obvious the keeper couldn't get there. Russell glares, turns, goes back to his mark and bounces Das who pulls him hard for four.
OVER 22 BAN 146/3 (Shakib 54* Das 3*) chasing 322
Five singles off Cottrell, four of them routine but one, from a Shakib pull that he cloths, falls about 3m short of Hetmyer at long leg. Shakib's scores in the 2019 World Cup so far: 75, 64, 121 and 54*.
OVER 21 BAN 141/3 (Shakib 51* Das 1*) chasing 322
Andre Russell returns, gingerly at first, pulling out of his run-up. Shakib raises his half-century off the first ball with a leg-glance for a single, employing the angle from round the wicket to do the same again later in the over. Das gets off the mark with a dab to third man for one but reveals his vulnerability when he chases a wide one and fiddles after it, the stroke of a batsman who hasn't had too many opportunities and wants to feel bat on ball. Jason Holder, seeing that, moves Chris Gayle back into slip. Russell uses him by not using him, banging the next couple in short and Das is struck by both, on hip and ribs.
OVER 20 BAN 138/3 (Shakib 49* Das 0*) chasing 322
Cottrell chalks up four dot balls to start his fifth over but Shakib, who plays and misses at two, chips the cross-seam slower ball one-handed back over the bowler's head for four to keep the scoreboard rotating.
��️ "That is unbelievably good!"— Sky Sports Cricket (@SkyCricket) June 17, 2019
Iqbal is run out for 48 by some lightning quick thinking from Cottrell! ⚡
Follow live updates from Taunton as the #MenInMaroon face #RiseOfTheTigers live on Sky Sports #CWC19 here: https://t.co/9hD88meY5Jpic.twitter.com/mQnhIs0KjR
OVER 19 BAN 133/3 (Shakib 44* Das 0*) chasing 322
Oshane Thomas keeps trying to cramp Shakib outside off-stump but the left-hander shall not be constrained and he flays two cut shots, rolling his wrists over the top to keep them down as he fillets the fielders at third man and backward point for fours. He uses the same shot to one that was livelier and gleans a single as it went finer. With the final ball of a pretty rank over, Thomas wheedles Mushfiqur out. All's well that ends well ...
Mushfiqur c Hope b Thomas 1 Strangled, flicking at one that would have been called wide but for the faintest of edges. FOW 133/3
OVER 18 BAN 121/2 (Shakib 34* Mushfiqur 0*) chasing 322
Rob Bagchi here for a second spell, as is Sheldon Cottrell, and he makes the breakthough with some breathtaking dexterity.
Tamim run out Good Lord! You need to seek this exemplary sharp piece of fielding out on video. The batsman pushed a drive up the pitch, the bowler held it one hand one bounce in his left and hurled down the stumps at the striker's end. Tamim turned, managed to avoid the shy at the stumps that might have decapitated him but could not make his ground. FOW 121/2
Tamim run out
OVER 17: BAN 119/1 (Tamim 47* Shakib 33*) chasing 322
Oshane. Shakib. Punchy shot for a couple. And now a big stroke! He's fairly cracked that one: Thomas bangs in the bumper and Shakib is back at it with interest, a beefy pull to the fence. This is a contest, and no mistake. Thomas, perhaps rattled, follows up with the wide and some of the Windies lads are looking distinctly put out...
OVER 16: BAN 112/1 (Tamim 47* Shakib 27*) chasing 322
Gabriel to Shakib Al Hasan. Welcome respite for the men in maroon, a quieter over. This game is shaping up nicely! At the drinks interval it's (210 runs required from 34 overs, RR: 7.00)
I am not certain what the DL par would be but will bring you that at 20 overs, which is of course the minimum requirement. Bruised, grey skies in Zumerzet.
Oshane Thomas, who has 0-12 off two, will resume after the break.
OVER 15: BAN 108/1 (Tamim 46* Shakib 24*) chasing 322
The West Indies battery of quicks banging it in but it's not making the Bangla boys hop, they're using the crease and leaning back, into balls to ask questions of the bowling.
Looking gloomy there..
OVER 14: BAN 103/1 (Tamim 44* Shakib 21*) chasing 322
Ferocious shot from Tamim as he laces the ball from Gabriel through extra cover. The ton up for Bangladesh and, while there is still a way to go (and 322 would be their highest ever chase in an ODI) they are going nicely right now.
OVER 13: BAN 96/1 (Tamim 38* Shakib 20*) chasing 322
Can Big Oshane Thomas come on and sort this out? Not with this legside wide to Tamim he won't. Thomas to Shakib Al Hasan, spiffy cut races for four and this ground is not looking big enough to contain these two explosive, classy batsmen right now...
OVER 12: BAN 89/1 (Tamim 37* Shakib 15*) chasing 322
Shannon Gabriel comes on but the runs continue to flow for Bangladesh. Gabriel to Shakib Al Hasan, dug in, he pulls at it and the top edge goes... safe. For four, as well.
OVER 11: BAN 81/1 (Tamim 36* Shakib 9*) chasing 322
Ooh two lovely shots from the classy Tamim, a cover drive and a pull. The first one showed off his fine timing, and the second how much time he seems to have, like all the top-notchers. Saw it early and pulled it crisply.
Russell falls over in his follow through of the last ball of the over! And he's going off the field...
OVER 10: BAN 70/1 (Tamim 26* Shakib 8*) chasing 322
Bangladesh are starting to happen! The runs are flowing, the big shots are coming out, and the fans are going tonto. Exciting stuff in Taunton as each batsman smacks a boundary off Holder: Shakib Al Hasan with a cross bat past the bowler, Tamim with a crisp pull.
The powerplay ends, the Tigers have their tails up but I don't think Windies will be too distraught just yet, witha wicket in the bag.
OVER 9: BAN 56/1 (Tamim 17* Shakib 3*) chasing 322
Shakib Al Hasan drives his first one down the ground for three.
WICKET! Soumya c Gayle b Russell 29
Ooh. That'll do it for Soumya - Chris Gayle has snaffled him at slip! It was clever bowling from Russell, he'd been angling the ball across and the delivery before, Soumya had leaned back and helped if over point for six! But he got carried away with that, and the next one's straighter, Soumya tries to lean back and dink it again. But it's too close to him, and he ends up just steering it towards Gayle. Good catch from Chris in fact. FOW 52/1
OVER 8: BAN 46/0 (Tamim 16* Soumya 23*) chasing 322
Couple of decent forcing shots from Tamim give him two runs per,
OVER 7: BAN 40/0 (Tamim 11* Soumya 22*) chasing 322
Dre Russell comes on, there are concerns about his fitness but he gets through this over well enough. More than reasonably in fact, just two runs off it.
OVER 6: BAN 38/0 (Tamim 10* Soumya 21*) chasing 322
Gayle with a good dive at slip to cut off a dinky shot. Just four off this over from Holder.
OVER 5: BAN 34/0 (Tamim 9* Soumya 19*) chasing 322
That's the over the Banger boys needed! Soumya Sarkar whacks a short one over midwicket for six, tickles the ball fine for four, and there is further bleeding for Cottrell when another bouncer pings over the head of the keeper for five wides. 18 off the over.
OVER 4: BAN 16/0 (Tamim 8* Soumya 7*) chasing 322
Holder pings Tamim on the pad, high, but that is going down and possibly over. West Indies will be well pleased with this start, but can the Bangladesh openers light the fuse?
OVER 3: BAN 15/0 (Tamim 8* Soumya 6*) chasing 322
Some nice bowling in this over from Cottrell. Shaping the ball. Ball three, to Soumya Sarkar, is a peach.
OVER 2: BAN 11/0 (Tamim 5* Soumya 5*) chasing 322
An eventful over from Jason Holder to Soumya Sarkar. The Bangladesh opener tries a ramp shot that lands not far short of Cottrell running in at third man. They get a single for that and he hits Tamim on the pad, but far too high. Soumya wallops a four over cover.
OVER 1: BAN 5/0 (Tamim 4* Soumya 0*) chasing 322
Cottrell digs the ball in several times. One is called a wide, bit harsh I thought. Tamim plays it all well enough, and stands up nicely on the toes to punch one to the fence. Good hostile start.
Tamim takes strike
Be great to see him deliver today. Sheldon Cottrell has the ball. Tamim has not played the short ball too well so far in this tournament.
People are saying it's a small
ground, but some of the sixes West Indies hit would be sixes anywhere. I fancy Windies to defend this, but if Dre Russell goes in the leg then they are going to be a bowler light.
At Taunton it looks
well it looks like a nice day to be inside, really.
Tyers here, Baggers is having a wash and brush up, I'll be your guide for some or all of the Bangladesh reply. They look like they have their work cut out to me, but we shall see.
Bangladesh require 322
What to make of that? No side has scored fewer runs off the opening Powerplay so far (32 for one) but when successive partnerships between Lewis and Hope, Pooran and Hope, Hetmyer and Hope, and Holder and Hope were firing it looked like they were heading north of 350. Bangladesh bowled with poise and intelligence to claw their way back into contention and I think West Indies are about 15 runs shy of where they should be. Bangladesh will have to bat well - it would be the perfect time for Tamim Van Winkle to end his long sleep and come to the party - and they will be bombarded by Thomas, Russell and Gabriel. But by playing that extra batsman, if anything happens to Russell, who pulled up lame against England and left the field against Pakistan and Australia, they will have to fiddle some overs from Chris Gayle.
We'll be back with coverage of Bangladesh's response shortly before it begins.
OVER 50: WI 321/8 (Thomas 6*)
Three wides in Saifuddin's first four deliveries as he tries to test the limits of Thomas's range outside off but he strays the wrong side of the mark again and again. Thomas gets away with a push to backward point for one then Bravo leans back and carts a six over long on who boarded his pogo stick but still couldn't reach it before it went over the boundary. Saifuddin follows with two more that skirt the wide marks but are actually legal and then ...
Bravo b Saifuddin 19 Bowls him with a slow yorker, the final ball of the innings as he swung hard at it.
OVER 49: WI 311/7 (Bravo 13* Thomas 5*)
The six off the final ball of the preceding over was like a golf stroke. Opening the stance slightly he simply teed off. Mustafizur starts with a pair of dot balls to Thomas who then gets away with a flick through midwicket. Back-to-back yorkers are dug out for singles straight, followed by a two to midwicket, running hard. Thomas then swings and misses and knocks the bails off after completing his 'stroke'. The umpires check for hit wicket but it isn't the bails falling down notwithstanding. Once the stroke is deemed to be over you can demolish all three stumps with a kung fu international lunge if you like but it's still not out.
OVER 48: WI 305/7 (Bravo 12* Thomas 1*)
Shaifuddin begins with three dot balls, spearing one into Thomas's pads and hitting his yorker length perfectly. Thomas eventually digs one out down the ground for a single but Bravo can't score off another yorker. Shaif gives them a wide, slanting it across the left-hander and Bravo ends the over by murdering a six over long on and on to the roof of the pav.
OVER 47: WI 297/7 (Bravo 6* Thomas 0*)
Simply brilliant death bowling from Mustafizur who ratchets his speed down, goes full, attacks the right-hander's leg-stump with penetrating precision and gets his man off the last ball. One wicket and only three runs.
Hope c Das b Mustafizur 96 Flips a full toss down deep backward square's throat. FOW 297/7
OVER 46: WI 294/6 (Hope 95* Bravo 4*)
Bangladesh again prove the adage that wickets are the best brake on a team. Tight, full, death bowling and gun fielding, especially by Saifuddin off his own bowling, restrict them to four singles and a two. Hope digs out the bouncer to wide long on for the latter but has been in his shell since Pooran and then Hetmyer and Holder seized the initiative, deferring to the power hitters.
OVER 45: WI 288/6 (Hope 91* Bravo 2*)
Mashrafe brings Mehidy back on, trying to catch these two orthodox top-order Test batsmen cold while they're trying to hit out at the end of the innings. It works for Bangladesh by keeping them down to five singles.
OVER 44: WI 283/6 (Hope 88* Bravo 0*)
Saifuddin is straining for yorkers and, after being skelped down the ground for four by Holder, gets his man.
Holder c Mahmudullah b Saifuddin 33 Arresting cameo ends after 15 balls when he spoons a low full toss to long off when aiming for cow corner. FOW 282/6
OVER 43: WI 274/5 (Hope 86* Holder 27*)
Holder carts an enormous six over midwicket, over and beyond the big screen placed there for the tournament. Mashrafe continues his round the wicket line of attack. Holder chisels out the yorker and sends it towards long-on. Tamim races in and tries to go for the catch which dies just in front of his dive and burrows beneath it, trickling for four. Fine effort by the fielder all the same.
OVER 42: WI 261/5 (Hope 84* Holder 16*)
Excellent from Mustafizur who elicits a defensive prod to point, hits Holder, makes him duck and then cramps him with another short ball that he short-arms for four wide of midwicket, making the big man look like a Tyrannosaurus Rex with long legs and diddy arms. Effective though.
OVER 41: WI 254/5 (Hope 83* Holder 10*)
Mindful of Holder falling to Joe Root last Friday, Mashrafe brings his best spinner, Shakib, back on. Holder drops to one knee and slog-sweeps him for six over deep midwicket than drills a glorious cover drive for four with treacly timing.
OVER 40: WI 243/5 (Hope 81* Holder 0*)
Hetmyer makes the joint-fastest 50 of this World Cup off 25 balls, an honour he shares with Australia's Alex Carey. It was a rare false stroke, played off the back foot and popping it off a leading edge short of mid-off. Mustafizur, whose last over went for 19, comes up trumps for his captain with two for two off his sixth over.
Russell c Mushfiqur b Mustafizur 0 Big shout first ball when the left-armer whistled one past the batsman's gloves as he groped forward. The captain gives him a slip but he's not needed as the bowler serves up another peach, angling it across Dre Russ who fends it through to the keeper. FOW 243/5
Hetmyer c Tamim b Mustafizur 50 Relief all round for Bangladesh. Tamim takes a blinding running catch, sprinting in from midwicket and grabbing it a couple of inches off the ground. FOW 242/4
OVER 39: WI 240/3 ( Hope 81* Hetmyer 49*)
Better from Mehidy who restricts them to six singles by bowling much straighter and flatter.
OVER 38: WI 234/3 ( Hope 78* Hetmyer 46*)
Spin from both ends as Mossadek is asked to go over the top. Hetmyer slaps the first through point for four, hoicks two through backward square and then flays the third over deep midwicket for six. The ball sails out of the ground and they have to replace it, for the second time today. After a short interval while the umpires select a new ball, Mossadek adjusts and fizzes the next two into the left-hander's pads and he can't swing them away but he takes two off the last with a wristy shovel round the corner for two. He has 46 off 21.
OVER 37: WI 220/3 ( Hope 78* Hetmyer 32*)
Mashrafe calls back Mehidy, hoping the spinner can slam the brakes on Hetmyer, but he is taken for 10, an improvement of sorts. Hope whips two through midwicket and flicks a single behind square leg. Hetmyer creams a back-foot drive through cover for four and they milk three singles to end the over.
OVER 36: WI 210/3 ( Hope 74* Hetmyer 26*)
West Indies are making 340 a plausible goal now - Hetmyer thrashes a pair of sixes off the hitherto dangerous Saifuddin, pulling the first over long leg and the second, with his right leg heading towards square leg to open his stance, launched over midwicket. Hope began the over with two twos through the on-side, Hetmyer ends it emphatically, moving to 26 off 12.
OVER 35: WI 193/3 ( Hope 69* Hetmyer 14*)
Mustafizur returns, round the wicket to Hope. The batsman advances on to the dance floor taking two strides down. The bowler bangs it in and Hope adjusts by smacking it with a flat bat at shoulder height over long off for six. Ridiculous tennis stroke, a double-fisted, lefty's backhand. Fizzer goes short again and Hope, anticipating it, hooks it fine for four. The bowler isn't having that and bumps him again, trying to knock his block off but it kicks and leaps over batsman and keeper and goes for five wides. He follows that with a leg-side wide. The drama isn't finished for the over as Hope pinches a homicidal single to short third man. A direct hit would have caught Hetmyer 5m short but the shy whistles past the stumps.
OVER 34: WI 174/3 ( Hope 58* Hetmyer 12*)
Hetmyer is a jack-in-a-box, up on his toes, attacking, batting with carefree abandon. Saifuddin errs with a back of a length delivery that the batsman attacks with a baseball swing, flaying a left-field line drive through wide mid-on for four. He dabs a single to third man and Hope flicks a couple off his pads.
OVER 33: WI 166/3 ( Hope 55* Hetmyer 7*)
Enter Hetmyer who brings urgency from the start, slog-sweeping two before sweeping in more orthodox fashion for four.
Pooran c Saraka b Shakib 25 He has been trying to break free again after smiting that six three overs ago. He drops to one knee and aims for the long-on boundary but doesn't middle it and sends a steepler to the long-on fielder who takes it 15m in from the boundary. FOW 159/3
OVER 32: WI 158/2 ( Hope 54* Pooran 25*)
Saifudding begins with the line to the left-handed Pooran that accounted for Gayle. Pooran almost follows the opener back into the hutch with an airy-fairy, no-footwork swish outside off. He almost compounds his error next ball by chipping a slower-ball just short of mid-off and gets away from strike with a back-foot carve through point that Mehidy prevents from going for four.
OVER 31: WI 156/2 ( Hope 53* Pooran 24*)
Five singles off Shakib who ends the over with 6-0-35-1. Time for some pace? Yes, 'Shaif' is coming back on. He took Gayle's wickets in his opening three-over burst.
OVER 30: WI 151/2 ( Hope 51* Pooran 21*)
Mossadek cuts off a boundary with an Angus Fraser stop, sticking out the size 13 on the rope, almost slide-tackling it. Mehidy, the bowler gives the fielder, a big hand but the Taunton roofer will be giving the spinner one too for providing him with an hour's work after Pooran comes down the track to loft a drive on to the roof of the stand at mid-off and cracks a tile. Dorothy Dix!
OVER 29: WI 142/2 ( Hope 51* Pooran 12*)
Shakib continues to apply the handbrake, leaking only three singles, to a sweep and a pair of drives.
OVER 28: WI 139/2 ( Hope 50* Pooran 10*)
Mehidy comes back into the attack and Hope takes two with an on-drive and brings up his fifty with another of those lovely square drives. Pooran, as if competing in a square-drive beauty contest, then gives us his, smoking it through point for four. This is an amazing statistic from our man Hoult:
Apparently 41 kilos of biscuits were eaten in the media centre yesterday during the India-Pakistan game at Old Trafford. That is a lot of custard creams.— Nick Hoult (@NHoultCricket) June 17, 2019
There is, of course, a vast McVities factory out at Levenshulme. Mancs and their brews, eh?
OVER 27: WI 130/2 ( Hope 47* Pooran 5*)
Pooran is tied down by Shakib after Hope takes a single to the cover boundary rider. Five deliveries give him nothing to swing at and no width with which to work. The left-hander is pinned by his fifth successive dot ball. Mushfiqur howls an appeal but it was going way down the fires blaze, way down, down, way, way on down. Shakib, embarrassed, disowns the appeal and heads off to his fielding position.
OVER 26: WI 129/2 ( Hope 46* Pooran 5*)
Superb shot from Pooran to get off the mark, scything a cut that backward point would have needed the legs of Marlies Gohr and hands of asbestos to cut off. It almost blazed a trail through the grass.
OVER 25: WI 122/2 ( Hope 44* Pooran 0*)
Shakib has looked very vulnerable so far but demonstrates his guile and control with using flight to gull Lewis after the batsman's initial assault.
Lewis c sub (Sabbhir) b Shakib 70 Aiming over midwicket, done by the flight, he slices it to long-off after starting the over with a six deep into the long pasture at cow corner. FOW 122/2
OVER 24: WI 114/1 (Lewis 62* Hope 44*)
Morning milking time, the two batsmen who came together with the score on 6/1, take six singles.
OVER 23: WI 108/1 (Lewis 59* Hope 41*)
Fifty for Lewis who gets there with an off-drive off Shakib down to the man on the fence. Anyone who remembers Evin's 176* at the Oval in 2017 knows how well he can accelerate after establishing a platform. Hope late cuts for three, dicing with death by going for the third. Had Shakib stood behind the stumps to gather the throw or clear a path for Mushfiqur's shy at the poles, it would have been very tight. Lewis sweeps and gets the faintest of bottom edges on the leg-side delivery to add four to his total and then gorges on Shakib's drag-down to clobber a cut in front of square for four.
OVER 22: WI 94/1 (Lewis 49* Hope 37*)
Mossadek races back to his mark, turns and bowls. Its a canny ploy, giving the batsmen no time to settle and they again settle for four singles.
OVER 21: WI 90/1 (Lewis 47* Hope 35*)
Shakib into the attack and the SLA merchant comes round the wicket to the left-handed Lewis, bowling into his pads. The great all-rounder has been coruscating with the bat so far but is happy to haul the coal and join the containment strategy with the ball. He is devastating on a Dacca bunsen but can be miserly away. The batsmen glean four singles.
OVER 20: WI 86/1 (Lewis 45* Hope 33*)
The spinners have contained West Indies well so far and Mossadek continues in that vein, conceding a two when drilled through the covers by Hope and his Pemberley-lake, dripping-wet Mr Darcy of a cover drive, and a pair of singles to backward point.
OVER 19: WI 82/1 (Lewis 44* Hope 30*)
Mustafizur finds his wheels and arrows one into Hope's thigh pad at 87mph. Hope then exploits the fuller length to drive a single to the cover sweeper and does the same again after Lewis tickles an attempted yorker down to fine leg for one. The Fizz, in a flap, tries his bouncer angled across the left-hander who top-edges his hook and fist-bumps Hoep after it sails fine for four.
OVER 18: WI 75/1 (Lewis 39* Hope 28*)
Mossadek is fine and is coming on to bowl. He rattles through the over of rapid spinners, mixed up with one seamer, and Hope takes his time to work him out, unable to penetrate the infield until the final ball which he drives for a single.
So, today's the day we decide which of the chasing pack really has a shot at making the seme-finals. Whichever of the Windies or Bangladesh loses, is going to find it very tricky to qualify, whichever wins is probably best placed to dislodge the top four. Massive game, #CWC19— Ben Jones (@benjonescricket) June 17, 2019
OVER 17: WI 74/1 (Lewis 39* Hope 27*)
Only a couple of singles as The Fizz reins them in. Pitch is dying. Whatever, limited spice there was this morning has gone and the ball is starting to scuttle through. Hope and Lewis tonk a couple of singles to the off-side sweeper.
OVER 16: WI 72/1 (Lewis 38* Hope 26*)
Mossadek slips as he hauls Lewis's cover drive in for the rope and needs the physio. The plyers take drinks while he receives treatment. Seems to have jarred his left shoulder and/or sprained his left wrist. He leaves the field for more than the magic sponge. Hope ends the fitful over by rdraining Mehidy off the back foot through cover for four. What a stroke. Money in the bank.
OVER 15: WI 64/1 (Lewis 35* Hope 21*)
Mashrafe gives himself a breather and calls up 'The Fizz'. Mustafizur begins with a ripper that climbs on Hope and moves towards the slips. He survives that one and then opens the face to punch a single, works two through midwicket after a wide and Lewis leg-bye as the left-armer loses his line.
OVER 14: WI 58/1 (Lewis 35* Hope 17*)
Mehidy yelps an lbw appeal when Lewis goes down to sweep. It looked as though it was heading down when it hit the batsman on the heel before the bat got there. Mushfiqur wanted to review, Mashrafe isn't keen and lets the clock run down. They run two.
OVER 13: WI 53/1 (Lewis 32* Hope 15*)
A seventh over for Mashrafe and he is tiring. He nearly diddles Lewis with his (very) slow ball that the batsman chisels out late for a singles but then the captain drops short and is flogged over wide mid-on for a one-bounce four. Lewis threads a drive down to long-off and Hope runs one off an open face to third man. Mashrafe has 7-1-24-0
OVER 12: WI 45/1 (Lewis 26* Hope 14*)
Excellent use of flight so far from Mehidy. After Lewis blocks one, they exchange three singles on the drive. It's the only damage because the off-breaks are giving the batsmen no leeway to use their feet or free their arms to cut loose.
OVER 11: WI 42/1 (Lewis 24* Hope 13*)
Lewis plays a T20 slog, clearing his front leg and cleaving the ball over extra for six. The step-change towards acceleration continues by stealing one to turn a leg-bye into two, taking on long leg's arm. Lewis dived to make his ground at the striker's end but was comfortably in when Mushfiqur gathered, then removed the bails.
OVER 10: WI 32/1 (Lewis 17* Hope 12*)
Bangladesh turn to spin and the offie Mehidy Hasan who follows the others' leads. He tosses it up, trying to entice them to drive and bring the slip into play. The batsmen are clever enough for wait for the off-breaks ans dink them for singles down the ground. Only 32 off the first Powerplay. Bangldesh have bowled very well to defend the postage stamp dimensions of this ground.
OVER 9: WI 30/1 (Lewis 16* Hope 11*)
Mashrafe is 35, has dodgy knees, but has been an inspirational bowler for Bangladesh. He's better bowling them off the reel than coming back later when he runs like the tin man. He continues for a fifth over and is back to his miserly bat, conceding only a single pushed to mid-on.
OVER 8: WI 29/1 (Lewis 15* Hope 11*)
Mustafizur replaces Saifuddin and after a respectable first ball, the left-armer sprays a wide down the legside. Lewis drills a drive down to long on, Hope uses the angle across him to dab a single down to third man and Lewis almost topples over as he leans towards the off-side to whip a single through midwicket. Hope is a princely player at his best and he ends the over with a beautiful stroke, creaming a back-foot drive, left elbow pointing heavenwards, on the up through cover for four.
OVER 7: WI 21/1 (Lewis 13* Hope 6*)
Three singles off Mashrafe, two worked in front of square on the legside, one run down to third man off an open face.
Jason Roy has torn his hamstring - definitely out for two games, maybe more. Eoin Morgan may yet recover from his back spasm in time for England’s game v Afghanistan tomorrow.— Lawrence Booth (@the_topspin) June 17, 2019
OVER 6: WI 18/1 (Lewis 11* Hope 5*)
Saifuddin tests Hope on the hook as part of a trap they are hoping to lay to pin him leg-before by making him hang on the back foot. He connects perfectly well as it was too wide outside off-stump and he carts it through midwicket for four. The next ball duly does swing in to his pads and Hope adjusts in the nick of time to jab down on it with his inside-edge a split-second before it hit the bullseye on his left knee-roll. After a Hope single flicked to midwicket, Saifuddin scythes a square cut for four off a rare piece of filth but then Saifuddin tries another two-card trick, pitching up and persuading it to move away. Lewis follows it and nicks off. The ball lands a foot short of slip. Ian Bishop has been pointing out for five overs that the keeper and slip are too deep for this pitch.
OVER 5: WI 8/1 (Lewis 6* Hope 0*)
Very tight from the start by the Bangladesh opening bowlers, sticking mostly to a good length and teasing them with movement. After playing out three dot balls, Lewis extends his defensive sufficiently to buy the time to hare a run to mid-off as it trickled towards the fielder. Hope farms the strike off the last ball with a leg-bye off his thigh pad as he fiddled at a glance.
OVER 4: WI 6/1 (Lewis 5* Hope 0*)
Wicket maiden for 'Shaif'. Some nibble out there for him and it exposed Gayle's concrete feet.
Gayle c Mushfiqur b Saifuddin 0 His universe of dominance is crumbling because of immobility. He has looked alarmingly stiff throughout and lets his hands follow one that leaves him, fencing late, indecisively and feathering an edge through to the keeper for a 13-ball duck. No World Cup for old men. FOW 6/1
OVER 3: WI 6/0 (Gayle 0* Lewis 5*)
Mashrafe moves another away from the left-handed Lewis having done the same to Gayle. He plays and misses but the Bangladesh captain then makes his first error, pulling back his length, and Lewis flays a back-foot punch past cover point for four. Mashrafe counters by coming round the wicket, entices Lewis to play away from his body and drag the ball off the inside edge towards the stumps where he is saved from playing on by his left boot.
As ever I loved the India Pakistan game yesterday loved the way both players and spectators stood / sat side by side and showed their unconditional love for the game..and a word of sympathy for the team in green they have been through a lot. World cricket needs them strong again— Nasser Hussain (@nassercricket) June 17, 2019
OVER 2: WI 2/0 (Gayle 0* Lewis 1*)
Mohammad Saifuddin, who has 'Shaif' on his shirt, takes the other new ball. Lewis presses forward and opens the face to take a single through point. A wide adds to the score then Gayle plays out five more dot balls. He is feeling his lower back. Having faced 11 balls he remains scoreless.
OVER 1: WI 0/0 (Gayle 0* Lewis 0*)
The Bangladesh captain Mashrafe takes the first new ball, bowling to Chris Gayle and his opening two deliveries arc away from Gayle's blade as he covers his stumps. He makes contact with the third and fourh, chopping cuts into the ground to be picked up by the infield. Gayle and Warner, two of the three men (along with Virender Sehwag) who transformed the art of opening in international cricket, have become the stodgiest of starters in their dotage. Gayle plays and misses twice more and Mashrafe starts with a maiden.
Rally, rally round the West Indies
Now and forever
Rally, rally round the West Indies
Never say never
We're not football, anthems are a foreign invader and we coped pretty well for 140 years before they were introduced. The game at its best transcends tribalism and we don't need songs to remind us where are loyalties lie.
Chris Gayle played at Taunton for Somerset in 2015 and 2016
Here's his debut at the tiny ground: 151*
One change for Bangladesh too
Bangladesh Tamim Iqbal, Soumya Sarkar, Shakib Al Hasan, Mushfiqur Rahim (wk), Mahmudullah, Liton Das, Mosaddek Hossain, Mehidy Hasan, Mohammad Saifuddin, Mashrafe Mortaza (capt), Mustafizur Rahman.
Liton Das replaces Mohammad Mithun for their first game in eight days.
Are gambling on Andre Russell's fitness gain. He has pulled up lame several times already during thus World Cup but are sticking with his explosive potential rather than the damp reality following his impact in the victory over Pakistan.
WIndies make one change - Bravo in for Brathwaite.
West IndiesChris Gayle, Elvin Lewis, Shai Hope, Nic Pooran, Darren Bravo, Shimron Hetmyer, Jason Holder, Andre Russell, Sheldon Cottrell, Oshane Thomas, Shannon Gabriel.
Bangladesh have won the toss
And put West Indies in to bat.
So, what does today really mean?
The format of this tournament's first round was always going to guarantee both early exits and dead rubbers. And after four matches of the round robin apiece, West Indies and Bangladesh face off in a match that will all but ensure an early exit for the losers, and render the rest of their matches essentially meaningless.
Even for the winners, a place just outside the all important top four will be the prize, having played one game more than New Zealand, India and England in second, third and fourth position.
Both teams had winnable games rained off last week and need to make up for lost time today, but there is plenty of cricket still to be played. The West Indies in particular will believe that victory here can act as a springboard towards the top four and qualification for the semi-finals.
The forecast isn't the best but we should get a full day of cricket at Taunton... We'll have team news and the toss at around 10am. Alistair Tweedale