Bangladesh defeated Zimbabwe in the third and final T20I at Harare Sports Club to clinch the three-match series 2-1. Soumya Sarkar was the star of the high-scoring encounter, excelling with both bat and ball to guide his side to a stunning victory on Sunday.
Chasing a humungous target of 194, the visitors rode on Sarkar’s phenomenal effort with the willow to record a win with four balls to spare. Sarkar scored 68 runs from 49 deliveries with the help of 10 boundaries, including a six.
The 28-year-old formed a 50 run stand with Shakib Al Hasan (25) for the second wicket and a 63-run partnership with skipper Mahmudullah (34) to make sure his side cross the finish line. Shamim Hossain remained unbeaten on 31 as Bangladesh won the contest by five wickets. For the hosts, Blessing Muzarabani (2/27) and Luke Jongwe (2/42) picked up two wickets each.
Earlier, Zimbabwe, after opting to bat first, put up a scintillating batting display to post 193/5 on the scoreboard in their allotted 20 overs. Wesley Madhevere, who was the hero in the second match, continued from where he left and displayed another batting masterclass. The 20-year-old smashed 54 runs from 36 deliveries, including six boundaries.
Madhevere was well supported by wicketkeeper batter Regis Chakabva. The Harare-born cricketer scored 48 runs at a breathtaking strike rate of 218.18. Chakabva slammed as many as 6 sixes during his quickfire knock. All-rounder Ryan Burl contributed 31 down the order to help Zimbabwe go beyond the mark of 190 runs.
Sarkar shined with the ball, taking a couple of wickets for 19 runs from three overs. All-rounder Shakib also produced a good show, conceding only 24 runs in his quota of 4 overs with a wicket as well.
Here is how Twitter reacted:
Excellent run chase by the Tigers! Keep it up in the next series too. And congratulations to Shamim Hossain for an extraordinary debut. pic.twitter.com/Bv0DbFoqCI
— Mehidy Hasan Miraz (@Officialmiraz) July 25, 2021
This really hurts!
Tough to take today’s defeat but we take it with our heads held high. So many great things we achieved this tour and we promise to build on those & find a winning consistent culture.
Will use this Pain to be better ❤️🩹
Congrats @BCBtigers on winning the series pic.twitter.com/7bXuOiNoBw
— Sikandar Raza (@SRazaB24) July 25, 2021
New Day, Old Celebration. Signature series victory celebration once again after today's win. #ZIMvBAN
— Nazmus Sajid (@nazmussajidc) July 25, 2021
— BPLT20 (@Official_BPLT20) July 25, 2021
— Bangladesh Cricket (@BCBtigers) July 25, 2021
— Zimbabwe Cricket (@ZimCricketv) July 25, 2021
— Glen Dhliwayo (@GlenDhliwayo) July 25, 2021
Back-to-back fifties from Wesley Madhevere and a cameo from Ryan Burl of 31* off 15 and Zimbabwe finished on 193-5 #ZIMvBAN
— ThePoppingCrease (@PoppingCreaseSA) July 25, 2021
Soumya Sarkar 68 and Shamim Hossain's cameo 31* took Bangladesh over the line.
— 𝑺𝒚𝒆𝒅 𝑺𝒂𝒎𝒊 🏏 (@SamiBlitz) July 25, 2021
Soumya Sarkar has been awarded player of the series for his brilliant contribution with both bat and bowl throughout the whole T20I series against Zimbabwe. pic.twitter.com/9a2Zc47rf8
— We Are Bangladesh Cricket Supporters (@loveBDcricket) July 25, 2021
Wesley Madhevere Last 5 T20I inns
16 (14) vs 🇵🇰
59 (47) vs 🇵🇰
23 (23) vs 🇧🇩
73 (57) vs 🇧🇩
54 (36) vs 🇧🇩
— 𝗝𝘂𝗻𝗮𝗶𝗱 𝗭𝗮𝗳𝗳𝗮𝗿 🇵🇰 (@iam_JZK) July 25, 2021