Cricket

Asia Cup 2018 final – Mustafizur’s last night heroics set up a golden chance for Bangladesh to make things even against India

 

Bangladesh knocked Pakistan out to book a date with India in Asia Cup 2018 finals. It was a virtual semifinal and Mashrafe Mortaza’s men defied all the odds as they beat Pakistan by 37 runs. Pakistan, who were considered strong contenders for the tournament, failed to latch on to a brilliant start given by their bowling unit.

Bangladesh, 12 for 3, were left stunned as Pakistan bowlers caused riots in the early stages of the match. Mushfiqur Rahman and Mohammad Mithun made a 144 runs partnership and took Bangladesh to a respective total of 239. Pakistan started in a similar fashion like Bangladesh as the Pakistani opener Fakhar Zaman flopped once again.

Imam-Ul-Haq made a fighting 83 but wickets kept on tumbling as the tournament favourites Pakistan crumbled to a loss.

2007 World Cup upset, one-run thriller in 2016 T20 WC, Dinesh Karthik last ball six and much more

Dinesh Karthik rescued India in Nidhas Trophy final
Dinesh Karthik rescued India in Nidhas Trophy final

Bangladesh cricket has grown in leaps and bounds in the past decade or so. The journey started with a historic victory over India in 2007 World Cup. From then on, Bangladesh stamped their authority. They removed the tag of a minnow slowly and gradually.

In the last 5 ODIs that both countries have played, India have emerged victorious just 3 times while Bangladesh won two of them. India-Bangladesh matches have gone right till the wire lately and this contest is never short on drama. It is certainly not short on nail biting finishes.

Bangladesh’s home series win (2-1) against India and derogatory chants by the Bangladesh supporters gave this fixture a whole new feel and dimension. A Bangladeshi fan photoshopped a image in which Taskin Ahmed (Bangladeshi fast bowler) was seen holding the neck of MS Dhoni.

After a 2-1 series loss against Bangladesh, India faced Bangladesh in T20 World Cup and the one-run victory over Bangladesh broke a lot of hearts. Pre-mature celebrations by Bangladesh had started and when India finally took the game away from The Tigers, the Bangladeshi fanbase could not hold their emotions and a lot of them were left in tears. When India lost against West Indies in semis, Mushfiqur Rahim celebrated India’s loss on twitter. He deleted the tweet soon and apologized.

The rivalry had taken its birth. This was just a classic example.

Then came the 2018 Nidhas Trophy final. 5 runs were needed off the last ball. Soumya Sarkar was up against Dinesh Karthik. Sarkar bowled and Karthik went – BAM! 6 runs over covers.

It ignited the Indian fanbase. India were completely down and out. Karthik’s title winning cameo of 29 from just 8 balls was a treat to watch.

3rd Asia Cup final for Bangladesh in last four editions

India vs Bangladesh: Is this the new India vs Pakistan?

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With the contests being neck-to-neck, India-Bangladesh rivalry has grown and taken rapid strides. Derogatory chants and pre-mature celebrations (pretty cringeworthy) from the Bangladesh side has given the rivalry a new sense of element.

Bangladesh defeated big teams like Sri Lanka and Pakistan to make their entry to the finals. Credit where it’s due – Bangladesh haven’t been at their usual best but they possess the grit to dismantle the Indian side on any given day.

India will start the match as favourites, however, the Bangladeshi players and their fans will be high on emotions. It will be interesting to see Bangladesh’s approach to the game whether they will go out all guns blazing or they will keep their emotions in check to get the last time revenge.

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