Dhaka // Tamim Iqbal celebrated his 23rd birthday with a half-century and Shakib Al Hasan also made fifty as Bangladesh beat Sri Lanka by five wickets Tuesday to get to the Asia Cup final for the first time.
The home side reached their revised target of 212 runs in 40 overs With 17 balls to spare after rain delayed the start of their innings by nearly two hours.
Bangladesh, who earlier dismissed Sri Lanka for 232, will play Pakistan in the final Thursday, with India, the five-time champions, out of the tournament despite finishing level on points with Bangladesh.
India paid the price for their shock defeat by Bangladesh which sent them out on the teams' head-to-head record.
"The final is one of the biggest achievements in our cricketing history. Hopefully we will cross that hurdle. It is a great boost to have the crowd supporting you." Mushfiqur Rahim, the Bangladesh captain said.
Nuwan Kulasekara claimed two wickets in his opening spell to help Sri Lanka reduce Bangladesh to 40 for three but Tamim and Shakib added 76 runs for the fourth wicket.
The unheralded off-spinner Sachitra Senanayake, playing his first match of the tournament, briefly threatened to spoil Bangladesh's party when he dismissed both batsmen in the space of four overs.
Senanayake got his reward for superb bowling when he had Tamim caught by Lahiru Thirimanne for 59 off 57 balls.
Four overs later Shakib fell for 54 to Senanayake, who kept one low and trapped the left-hander lbw.
Nasir Hossain and Mahmudullah continued the Bangladesh momentum, delighting the Sher-e-Bangla crowd which included the Bangladesh prime minister Sheikh Hasina.
Nasir was unbeaten on 36 and Mahmudullah made 32 not out, the pair adding 77 runs for the sixth wicket.
Earlier the fast bowler Nazmul Hossain, playing his first match in the competition, produced a brilliant opening spell which earned him the scalps of Mahela Jayawardene (five), Tillakaratne Dilshan (19) and Kumar Sangakkara (six).
Nazmul, who finished with three for 32, was complemented by his opening partner Mashrafe Mortaza, who gave away just 13 runs in his first spell of six overs.
Chamara Kapugedera (62), Thirimanne (48) and Upul Tharanga (48) boosted Sri Lanka but two wickets each from the left-arm spinners Shakib and Abdur Razzak pegged them back.
"It has been a great tournament for us," Rahim said. "Everyone chipped in. Nazmul Hossain did well, that set up the game. We had a stiff target after the rain, but Shakib and Tamim batted well.
"We did not play to our potential, made quite a few mistakes and never got into a rhythm," Jayawardene, the Sri Lanka captain, said. "Bangladesh created opportunities from the start. We felt the wicket was much slower, it came on better after the rain.
"We had our opportunity when they were 135 for five, but some wayward bowling gave it away."