The third ODI at Sylhet between hosts Bangladesh and Zimbabwe was a rain-hit encounter, with steady downpour reducing the game to a 43-over per side contest.
Zimbabwe’s decision to bowl first after winning the toss backfired as centurions from previous games in the three-match ODI series, Tamim Iqbal and Liton Das, batted out of their skins posting a mammoth opening partnership.
In the first ODI, Liton Das stole the show with his 126, while Tamim posted the highest individual score by a Bangladeshi batsman with his 158 in the second ODI.
But in the third ODI, both Das and Tamim matched each other, shot for shot, and batted the hapless visitors out of the game.
Their monumental partnership of 292, is now the third-highest opening stand in ODIs and sixth for any wicket. Apart from that, it is the highest partnership tally for Bangladesh for any wicket.
Liton mesmerized with his strokeplay smashing 143-ball 176; he tore apart Zimbabwe bowlers by hitting 16 fours and eight maximums. At the other end, Tamim registered a back to back hundred, with his unbeaten knock of 128, which came of 109 deliveries, laced with seven fours and six maximums.
The two opening stalwarts catapulted Bangladesh’s score to a 322 in just 43 overs. With already the series lost, finishing on the losing side by a whisker in the previous match, the visitors were demoralized before coming out to bat.
Mashrafe Mortaza, captaining the Bangladesh side for the last time, received a befitting farewell as Zimbabwe crumbled under pressure and were bundled out for 218. Sikander Raza, who scored a valiant knock of 66 in the previous game, was the only batsman who managed to delay the inevitable.
Raza held one end with wickets tumbling around; his 61 came off just 50 deliveries, he scored five fours and a couple of maximums. However, it was Mohammad Saifuddin, who was the chief architect of destruction with the ball for Bangladesh.
The talented all-rounder displayed his bowling prowess with a four-wicket haul. Saifuddin was ably supported by spinner Taijul Islam, who picked up a couple of wickets, keeping it tight as he conceded only 38 in his nine overs.
Mortaza, Mustafizur Rahman, and Afif Hossain picked up a wicket each to complete Bangladesh’s whitewash in the three-match ODI series.
In the end, it was a clinical performance from the Tigers who won the match by 123 runs by the DLS method. Liton and Tamim were both felicitated with the Player of the Series award for their twin tons, which is also a joint record for three-match series, equalling Hashim Amla and AB de Villiers’ feat against Zimbabwe in 2010.
Player of the match, Das, broke Tamim’s 3-day record for the highest individual score by a Bangladesh batsman after his maiden 150+ score, and his third ton overall in ODI career. Liton’s 176 is also the highest ODI score by a batsman, thus far, in 2020.