[www.inewsguyana.com] – Denesh Ramdin wouldn’t have had as much fun on a cricket field as on Monday afternoon at Warner Park. His belligerent 169 contributed to the highest third-wicket partnership in ODIs with Darren Bravo, who also accumulated a century, and ensured West Indies completed a 3-0 whitewash by 91 runs.
The hosts were catapulted to 338 for 7 in 50 overs, a score that was well out of Bangladesh’s reach especially at a time when their batsmen are scraping the bottom of the confidence barrel. But they did show signs of a fight after the hiding, playing out their full quota of overs to make 247 for 8.
Bangladesh were 2 for 2 in the second over and were threatening to sink further, before Tamim Iqbal struck his first international fifty after 18 innings and more than nine months. Tamim added 99 runs for the third wicket with Mushfiqur Rahim, who top-scored with 72. However, the last hopes Bangladesh had faded away when Mushfiqur holed out in the deep in the 37th over.
The West Indies bowlers could bide their time thanks to Ramdin and Bravo. The duo clattered 19 sixes, the most by West Indies in an ODI, as they amassed 258 runs for the third wicket. Their partnership beat the previous record for the third-wicket stand, held by Hashim Amla and AB de Villiers, by 20 runs. For most of their stand, it was hard to see past their bats as they dined on a bowling attack that was at times perfect for big-hitting.
Mashrafe Mortaza and Al-Amin Hossain, despite the early promise, barely clocked above 130 kph while Abdur Razzak, Sohag Gazi and Mahmudullah persisted with shortish darts. With a moderate-sized ground, a flat surface and a bit of wind behind them, West Indies simply took off.
The early losses of Lendl Simmons and Chris Gayle were forgotten as Ramdin and Bravo used singles to ease the pressure. The change of tactics was apparent in the 19th over, in which Mahmudullah gave away 10 runs. The pair plundered 19 runs in the 22nd over, with Ramdin peppering the crowd behind midwicket and Bravo opting to go straight.
Ramdin razed three sixes off Mortaza in the 38th over and hurtled to a second century in his last four ODIs. Bravo reached his hundred soon after, a knock that had been a long time coming as he has struggled to convert fifties into centuries in ODIs.
Ramdin struck 11 sixes while Bravo contributed eight, though none of it would have happened had Bangladesh held on to their chances.
Mushfiqur missed a stumping off Bravo, who was beaten by Abdur Razzak while batting on 10. Mushfiqur fumbled so awkwardly that he was in no position for a second go at the stumps. Razzak had his own gaffe when he failed to get under a looping ball at mid-on after Ramdin had skied Mashrafe on 35.
Razzak lost his form, bowling much too short and far too quickly. Gazi’s struggles might be understandable, considering the scrutiny surrounding his bowling action. He hardly found rhythm, and was perhaps wrongly entrusted with the first over of the match. Al-Amin was the only saving grace, ending up with his second four-wicket haul in ODIs, both coming in this series. But he could not rein in the West Indies batsmen.
West Indies also faced some difficulty with Bangladesh’s third-wicket stand. Mushfiqur and Tamim added 99 runs with a bit of style, but the bluster was obviously missing. Anamul Haque and Imrul Kayes were gone by the first eleven balls, the latter to Kemar Roach’s stunning one-handed catch at mid-on. Although Mahmudullah offered some resistance during a 55-run, fifth-wicket stand with his captain, the contest had turned West Indies’ way earlier, following Tamim’s dismissal in the 22nd over.
The abiding memory from the first-ever day-night match at Warner Park, though, would be what happened during the first half of the game. The sight of Ramdin and Darren Bravo slamming one six after another was enough to keep the fans singing and dancing. (Cricinfo.com)