ICC World T20: Brilliant Tamim Iqbal leads Bangladesh to Super 10; helps thrash Oman by 54 runs in final qualifier
Bangladesh beat Oman by 54 runs via Duckworth Lewis method in a rain-hit Group A qualifying match in Dharamsala.
New Delhi: Opener Tamim Iqbal finally converted his good starts to become the first batsman to hit a century in the 2016 edition of ICC World Twenty20 on Sunday even as rain continue play hide and seek with the organisers. Bangladesh beat Oman by 54 runs via Duckworth Lewis method in a rain-hit Group A qualifying match in Dharamsala.
Asking to bat first, Bangladesh started their innings in a cautious mode. But after the fall of first wicket, in the form of Soumya Sarkar, Bangladesh produced a rollicking batting display against minnows Oman in the match no. 12 of the qualifiers.
The Bangla Tigers then rode onto an unbeaten 63-ball 103-run knock to post a massive 180 at Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association Stadium. His knock was packed with 10 fours and five sixes and he single-handedly led the Asia Cup finalists to a challenging 180 for two.
Iqbal's innings was ably supported by Sabbir Rahman, who made a quick-fire 44 off 26 deliveries. The duo posted a 97-run second wicket partnership to effectively shut out Oman's chances of producing a shock defeat.
The 26-year-old took 60 deliveries to reach the milestone. The left-handed batsman thus became the first Bangladesh player to hit centuries in three formats of the game. He has seven Test and six ODI tons in his name.
He reached the hundred with a cover drive in the fourth delivery of the 19th over, bowled by Bilal Khan. The opener hit 10 fours and five sixes. He is the 11th player in the history to achieve this rare feat and joined an illustrious list of players like – Chris Gayle, Brendon McCullum, Mahela Jayawardene, Suresh Raina, Rohit Sharma, Tillakaratne Dilshan, Martin Guptill, Faf du Plessis, Ahmed Shehzad and Shane Watson.
Iqbal's opening partner Sarkar (12) and all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan (17) were the other two batsmen who got to swing their bat in the first innings.
Oman started the chase in ominous fashion, losing opener Zeeshan Maqsood in the very second delivery of the innings. Their cause never received a boost with two rain stoppages making the matter worse for the Associate team.
They were 41 for 2 in seven overs when rain forced suspension of play for the first time for about 45 minutes, with intermittent rain associating with thunder and lightning. At resumption they were set a revised target of 152 off 16 overs but only eight balls were bowled for the second stoppage to happen.
Oman were then set a revised target of 120 from 12 overs which meant that they had to score 75 runs from 22 balls but all they managed was 65 for nine.
Jatinder Singh (25) was top-scorer for Oman while other batsmen failed miserably. Adnan Ilyas (13) was the only other batsman who managed a double-digit score.
Shakib-Al-Hasan produced a brilliant spell of spin bowling, scalping four wickets from his three overs. He conceded 15 runs.
Bangladesh now joined India, Pakistan, New Zealand and Australia in the 'Group of death' in the Super 10 stage. And they play Pakistan in their first main draw match on March 16 in Kolkata.
From the other group, Afghanistan have qualified to join defending champions Sri Lanka, South Africa, West Indies and England. The Associate team remained unbeaten in the qualifiers, and defeated Zimbabwe, Scotland and Hong Kong.