Australia suffered a heartbreak astheir ICC Champions Trophy match against Bangladesh was abandoned due to incessant rain after they were well-placed to register an easy win here today. Chasing a modest target of 183 for a win, Australia were 83 for one in 16 overs when rained arrived at the Oval and the match could not be resumed after that.
Another four overs more could have given Australia full two points as 20 overs were needed to constitute a completed match. They were well ahead of the par score for 20 overs. With the match declared as ‘no result’, both the sides settled for one point each. This was the second consecutive ‘no result’ for Australia after their opening match against New Zealand was also washed out on June 2. Australia now have two points from as many matches and they will now have to win their last Group A match against England on June 10 to qualify for the semifinals. The ‘no result’ benefited Bangladesh as a loss today would have knocked them out of the tournament. They had lost to England in their opening fixture on June 1. When rain came at the end of the 16th over of Australian run chase, David Warner and captain Steven Smith were batting on 40 (off 44 balls) and 22 (off 25 balls) respectively. Aaron Finch was the Australian batsman out for 19.
Veteran South African batsman Hashim Amla (81 innings) and West Indies great Vivian Richards (88 innings) had reached the milestone faster than Warner and Kohli. Earlier, a sensational death bowling spell by Mitchell Starc (4/29) trumped Tamim Iqbal’s superb 95 as Australia bowled Bangladesh out for a paltry 182 in 44.3 overs. Starc destroyed Bangladesh late in the innings with a sensational death bowling display. He grabbed three wickets from the 43rd over, including that of Iqbal. He then scalped the last Bangladesh batsman to end the innings early.
The Australian fast bowler missed a chance for a hat- trick as he took three wickets in four balls. Leg-spinner Adam Zampa grabbed two wickets in an
impressive spell while Josh Hazlewood, Pat Cummins, Travis Head and Moises Henriques took a wicket apiece as the Australians throttled Bangladesh batsmen — except for Iqbal– for runs.
Bangladesh elected to bat on an Oval pitch that offered pace but little swing and Iqbal played a lone hand in the face of some fine bowling by the Australians. His 69-run stand for the fourth wicket with Shakib Al Hasan (29) was the only substantial partnership for the Bangladesh side with only three batsmen reaching to double digit figures. Iqbal hit six fours and three sixes in his fine 144-ball innings as he gave scant respect of the Australian bowlers who otherwise gave a good account of themselves. Bangladesh began at a slow pace with the Australians tying them down by bowling a tight line and length. On top of that, Bangladesh lost wickets at regular intervals with Iqbal being the one making a resistance to the Australian bowlers. Soumya Sarkar (3) was the first to go in the sixth over at team score of 22 with Josh Hazlewood edging him to Matthew Wade as the opening batsman played without any foot movement.
One down Imrul Kayes (6) was beaten by Pat Cummins’ pace as the batsman offered a simple catch to Aaron Finch at cover point as Bangladesh were reduced to 37 for 2 in the 11th over. Wicketkeeper batsman Mushfiqur Rahim (9) did not last long as he fell LBW to a Moises Henriques delivery in the 17th over and Bangladesh were in trouble at 53 for 3. Iqbal was, however, unruffled even though wickets fell regularly at the other end. He picked Henriques for a special
treatment in the 23rd over, hitting the bowler for two fours and a six to collect 16 runs from it. In the next over, Iqbal reached to his 37th fifty in his 171st ODI with a single off Travis Head.
Shakib gave got good support to Iqbal for a while as the duo added 69 runs for the fourth wicket before he fell LBW to a delivery off in the 30th over. Adam Zampa then rocked the Bangladesh innings with two quick scalps. Zampa first had Sabbir Rahman (8) caught by Smith in the 35th over before scalping the wicket of Mahmudullah in the 37th over. Bangladesh reached 171/6 at the end of 40th over and it was left to Iqbal to accelerate the innings in the last 10
overs. But he fell in 43rd over bowled by Starc who grabbed three wickets in a dramatic death bowling show.
Laraib Kashif is a freelance writer and cricket lover. He is interested in writing and playing Fantasy Cricket!