All the major cricketing nations to visit Bangladesh in the past three years, with the exception of Sri Lanka, have discovered to their cost that they are far from the pushovers they once were. That truth is now painfully evident to England after a 34-run defeat in Mirpur in the second ODI that sets up a decider to the series in Chittagong on Wednesday.
When Bangladesh set England 239 for victory, they knew they had a vaguely competitive, if unprepossessing, score, but surely even they could not have imagined that it would provide such a substantial winning margin. England’s 204 – bolstered by a last-wicket stand of 45 – could have been much lower.
England’s cause was all but lost when Jos Butler, their captain, became the seventh batsman out at 123, his serene resistance ended when he walked across his stumps against Taskin Ahmed and was given out lbw on review. After Bangladesh celebrated uproariously and Butler took a drink of water before departing, something that was said riled him. He swung back in fury and was ushered away by the umpires. There were more words at end-of-match handshakes, England’s fury unabated. The match referee could well take an interest.
Summarized scores: Bangladesh 238 for 8 (Mahmudullah 75, Mashrafe 44) beat England 204 (Butler 57, Mashrafe 4-29, Taskin 3-47) by 34 runs