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Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 19 November 2018

Imrul Kayes stars as Bangladesh beat Zimbabwe to seal ODI series

Opening batsmen combine for 148 runs to lead the hosts to a seven-wicket victory

Imrul Kayes in action during his match-leading innings for Bangladesh against Zimbabwe. AFP
Imrul Kayes in action during his match-leading innings for Bangladesh against Zimbabwe. AFP

Opener Imrul Kayes and Liton Das hit big half-centuries as Bangladesh crushed Zimbabwe by seven wickets in the second one-day international to take an unassailable lead in the three-match series in Chittagong on Wednesday.

Imrul was dismissed for 90, but this was enough to help Bangladesh cruise to 250-3 in 44.1 overs after they restricted Zimbabwe to 246-6 at the Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium.

Imrul shared 148 runs with Das in the opening stand, Bangladesh's best ODI start in 2018.

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Liton chipped in with 83 after being reprieved on naught by the third umpire, who overturned a leg-before decision in the very first over of the innings.

Off-break bowler Sikandar Raza dismissed Liton to break the stand and then also had Fazle Mahmud in his next over, but Imrul stood firm to deny Zimbabwe further momentum. Raza also removed Imrul before finishing with 3-43.

Bangladesh captain Mashrafe Mortaza acknowledged dew in the field made their job easier.

"I think winning the toss was crucial. We knew about the dew, but it was not as much as we expected," Mortaza said.

Mushfiqur Rahim and Mohammad Mithun were unbeaten on 40 and 24 runs respectively.

Sent into bat first, Zimbabwe earlier lost skipper Hamilton Masakadza (14) but Brendan Taylor hit 75 while Raza (49) and Sean Williams (47) played two useful knocks to give them a competitive score.

"We didn't manage to kick on after the kind of start. Credit to Bangladeshi bowlers for starving us at the death," Masakadza said.

The third and final match of the series will also be held at the same ground on Friday.