Staff Correspondent

A Banglawash for Zimbabwe! Most likely. When Soumya Sarkar and Imrul Kayes put up an aggressive 220 partnership in the second wicket to put Bangladesh in the driving seat in the third and final match of the 3-match ODI.

Bangladesh were 225 for 2 in 31 overs till filing of this report. Soumya made a blistering century (117 off 91) on his comeback while Imrul was batting on 95 off 93, waiting for his second century in the tournament.

Even though Soumya Sarkar and Imrul Kayes earlier, both being in aggressive mood, were often playing the ball in the air while living dangerously, their positive mindset allowed Bangladesh to relieve pressure as they recovered from the early wicket of Liton Das, out for naught, in the very first ball of Kyle Jarvis.

Imrul, who has been in fantastic touch with innings of 144 and 90 in the first two ODIs, continued his good vein of form, picking up his 17th ODI fifty off 41 deliveries as Tigers crossed the 100-mark without any further loss of wickets.

Bangladesh had lost opener Liton Das in the very first ball of the innings as they got off to a stuttering start in their chase of Zimbabwe’s 286 with Kyle Jarvis bagging the opener’s wicket with a delivery that zagged in after pitching to hit Liton on the pads.

Forced into batting first by Bangladesh after winning the toss, Zimbabwe lost two wickets in quick successions within the first three overs. However they recovered from the early loss of both openers to reach 286 for 5 in the third ODI against Bangladesh in Chittagong, Sean Williams striking a career-best 129 not out and sharing in fruitful partnerships with Brendan Taylor, Sikandar Raza and Peter Moor. The 132 runs he added with Taylor for the third wicket gave Zimbabwe the early advantage, an 84-run stand with Raza kept the score ticking over, while alongside Moor he took charge at the death to add 62 in quick time.

Those stands allowed Zimbabwe to get right what they had failed to do in the second game, when a similarly strong position was squandered against Bangladesh’s death bowling that gave no quarter.

Earlier, Bangladesh rested Mustafizur Rahman and Mehedi Miraz as Soumya Sarkar and Abu Hider took their place for the third and final ODI of the series against Zimbabwe at the Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury stadium in Chattogram.

Fazle Rabbi, who is yet to score a run after being dismissed for naught in both matches, was rested while Ariful Haque was handed his ODI debut. Ariful became the 130th player to make his ODI debut for Bangladesh.