Mahmudullah* 43(18); | Rubel Hossain 0(18);
Isuru Udana* 2.5-0-26-1; | Thisara Perera 2-0-20-0
Craig Overton 2(7); | Stuart Broad 9(7);
Seth Rance 14-1-61-2; | Kyle Jamieson 13-1-59-0
Tim Murtagh* 4(8); | Andy McBrine 9(8);
Graeme Cremer* 8.1-1-18-2; | Sikandar Raza 4-0-11-1
Seen anything from the Rajshri Productions? If this match were a movie, it would be one of them. Think about the home crowd that goes back all teary-eyed; or Sri Lanka who couldn't even qualify for a tournament final being played in the honour of their independence; or Bangladesh, who were passionately rowdy teen-like. Phew, this has been quite a game. Not sure I'm ready for an India-Bangladesh final, which is on Sunday (March 18). We'll see you there anyway; that's what we do. Until then, this is Pratyush Sinha logging out with Raju Peethala, Nikhil Jadhav, Ramakrishnan, Vineet Anantharaman and Venkatesh. Catch your breath, will ya, ta-ta!
Shakib - captain, Bangladesh: "You can't expect more than that in a T20 game. There was everything. Emotions, drama, everything. We are lucky to be on the winning side. Kusal Perera and Thisara Perera batted very well, got themselves into a winning position. I had only one hit before I came into the game, so I knew I wasn't 100%. It was important to rotate the strike and give it to Mahmudullah. This is one of our best innings in the last five overs. We always had a healthy competition on the ground (with Sri Lanka); outside, we are friends. Emotions take over sometimes. I need to be careful as the captain and the leader of the team. India are a very good side but we have the momentum, so hopefully we can continue the performance. Hopefully the Sri Lankan crowd can come and support us (laughs innocently)."
Perera - captain, Sri Lanka: "Very tough game. Really disappointed. I have to say something about our crowd -- thanks for everything. I'm sorry about not making it to the final. I sometimes take some time for my batting, I can do something only after that (what went wrong). 160 is a reasonable target. Last few series, we did well. Really good outcome from our juniors."
Mahmudullah - Player of the Match: "One of my best innings. when Shakib came into the team, that was a big boost. Players were eager to do well today. My plan was to strike the ball as hard as I can. To see the ball properly and try to hit accordingly. I was quite nervous (in the last few overs). When I and Shakib were there, I was at ease but Shakib's wicket put pressure on me. Other guys came up to me and believed that we'll do it. The confusion was that the ball (Mustafizur's wicket ball) would be the first bumper of the over but it's in the past now, so let's forget it."
Tears in the crowd that's going back quick.. Here we are with the presentations
Tamim: "It's very emotional. We saw the leg umpire signalling a no ball and that's why we were complaining. That created the confusion. It's a gentleman's game, everyone should have behaved better, especially from our team, we could have done it nicely. It's all done and dusted now. Sri Lankans are great friends. I don't think this incident will create anything bad. The last six was unbelievable. I am lost for words. I thought I should have continued a bit longer, but in the end we won. We executed the plans given by the coaches. Thisara and Kusal batted brilliantly. They gave us a challenging total, but we finished well."
I mean Sri Lanka tried their best. They were 41/5 inside 10 overs and then somehow, miraculously, thanks to the Pereras, racked up 159 that Bangladesh only chased down with a ball to spare. When Tamim Iqbal and Soumya Sarkar lost their wickets in consecutive overs, it looked like Bangladesh had undone all the hard work. But Mahmudullah, unburdened from the labours of captaincy today, stood through all that and hauled his side into the finale. How about that. There was drama around how Mustafizur's wicket-ball was a no-ball, Shakib even took his team off the ground, only for them to return and see a win. How about that!
10:32pm local: Look at Mahmudullah, look at him celebrating! He's pumped up. Runs around, fist-pumps and screams in delight. He's calling out to the heavens! And now they all go up, his team-mates, both palms reverse-cupped, fingers curled and waving, not for the catch but celebrating. Gee, it's an invasion by the snake dance, which's become quite a fad now (there were posters tonight in the crowd, I swear). And where's Shakib's t-shirt? Fast forward a minute and here's Tamim, with his hands around Mendis's shoulders to calm him down. Guess there's some words exchanged between him and Sabbir. It's difficult sometimes to comprehend the emotions but try telling that a sportsman.
Great, the players are back. Nice to see.
Oh dear, this isn't pretty. Umpire steps in to diffuse the tension. Shakib's furious at the boundary rope about something and .. there you go .. he's calling the Bangladeshi batsmen back. When Mustafizur got out, a couple of subs from the Bangladesh substitites, in yellow tees, came out and got into a verbal fight with Thisara Perera. That's what Shakib, and the unbeaten Mahmudullah, are not happy about. Is the debate about the height of the ball, is it? Looks like it. Apparently, the square leg umpire stretched his arm to signal a no-ball, but eventually they deemed it as a legal delivery once Mustafizz got run out. That seemed to have raised temperatures in the Bangladesh dressing room and thus, Shakib fumed at the umpires before asking his batsmen to walk back to the dressing room
Rubel Hossain, right handed bat, comes to the crease
Udana to Mustafizur, THAT'S OUT!! Run Out!!
Mustafizur Rahman, left handed bat, comes to the crease
Perera to Mehidy Hasan, THAT'S OUT!! Run Out!!
Thisara Perera [1.0-0-9-0] is back into the attack
Mehidy Hasan, right handed bat, comes to the crease
Crowd's gone berserk. It's like they're independent again. "Sri Lanka, Sri Lanka"
Udana to Shakib, THAT'S OUT!! Caught!!
Captain-is and captain-was trying to win it for Bangladesh
Isuru Udana [1.0-0-8-0] is back into the attack
Pradeep's over in the end, I fear, will hurt Sri Lanka. Let's see.
So, 29 needed in 3 overs. This is going to be tight, isn't it? Sit tight in that couch.
Bangladesh need 40 runs in 24 balls
Shakib Al Hasan, left handed bat, comes to the crease
J Mendis to Soumya Sarkar, THAT'S OUT!! Caught!!
Jeevan Mendis [2.0-0-8-0] is back into the attack
Mahmudullah, right handed bat, comes to the crease
Groundsmen seem to be breaking away from the ground's periphery, so that's good. We want this to go down to the wire
Gunathilaka to Tamim, THAT'S OUT!! Caught!!
Danushka Gunathilaka [1.0-0-9-0] is back into the attack
Talk about celebrations... Aponso seems to have an interesting one of his own. He gave Rahim a snakecharmer send-off. Might have been a reaction to Rahim's snake-dance moves last week
Soumya Sarkar, left handed bat, comes to the crease
Aponso to Rahim, THAT'S OUT!! Caught!!
"Some 20-odd groundsmen have taken their position though," informs Shirshendu from the venue. "They can sense rain, is it?"
Amila Aponso [2.0-0-14-0] is back into the attack
Akila Dananjaya [3.0-0-27-2] is back into the attack
Bangladesh are in no hurry here. Their two senior batsmen batting smartly
Isuru Udana, left-arm fast medium, comes into the attack
Shirshendu Roy has spotted something: "Little tiff between Jeevan Mendis and Mushfiqur Rahim as the former collides with the non-striker while trying to stop the ball. Next ball, Mendis was again moving towards the ball before he decided to stop next to Rahim and make a remark. Sri Lanka realize he's the man in form and this could be a way of getting under his skin."
Jeevan Mendis, right-arm leg break, comes into the attack
Akila Dananjaya [2.0-0-17-2] is back into the attack
Danushka Gunathilaka, right-arm off break, comes into the attack
Thisara Perera, right-arm medium, comes into the attack
The crowd is very loud and right behind the home team.
Mushfiqur Rahim, right handed bat, comes to the crease
Dananjaya to Sabbir Rahman, THAT'S OUT!! Stumped!!
Dhananjaya de Silva is on the field for Pradeep.
Amila Aponso, left-arm orthodox, comes into the attack
Sabbir Rahman, right handed bat, comes to the crease
Dananjaya to Liton Das, THAT'S OUT!! Caught!!
Akila Dananjaya, right-arm off break, comes into the attack
Tamim and Liton Das are at the crease. Tamim is on strike. Pradeep will open the attack