Another match in the ICC World Cup 2023, and Bangladesh have found themselves one more step down in the points table.
Led by Shakib Al Hasan, Bangladesh suffered another defeat as they failed to chase the 230-run target against the Netherlands in Kolkata on Saturday, losing by a margin of 87 runs.
With this defeat, Bangladesh’s chance to qualify for the next phase of the World Cup has effectively ended.
This marked Bangladesh’s sixth match in the World Cup and their fifth consecutive defeat. Prior to the World Cup campaign, it was anticipated that Bangladesh would perform strongly against the Netherlands, considering their higher position in the ICC rankings.
However, this proved to be wishful thinking for Bangladeshi fans. In the main event, Bangladesh failed even to reach a below-par total. This dismal show angered the fans in the gallery of the Eden Gardens, who came to watch their team play all the way from Bangladesh. Some also did not miss the chance to joke on the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB).
When Bangladesh needed 115 runs off 96 balls with two wickets in hand, a group of Bangladeshi fans were seen on the TV screen, holding up a placard that read, “Our aim is the next World Cup.”
This was evidently a jest directed at the president of the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB), who frequently emphasises the importance of performing well in the "next World Cup", even though that "next World Cup" never seems to arrive.
The Netherlands won the toss in the match, the first in Kolkata in this year’s World Cup, and opted to bat first. They lost two wickets inside three overs, but that did not deter them from posting a challenging total on a surface that offered a lot to the bowlers, unlike the other venues in the World Cup.
Scott Edwards, the wicketkeeper-batsman and captain of the Netherlands, led his team from the front, scoring 68 off 89 balls. Wesley Barresi was the second-highest run scorer for them, while Sybrand Engelbrecht contributed with 35.
For Bangladesh, Taskin Ahmed, Shoriful Islam, Mustafizur Rahman, and Mahedi Hasan took two wickets each.
In reply, Bangladesh tumbled for 142 in 42.2 overs, with Mehidy Hasan Miraz scoring the highest of 35 runs.
Litton Das was Bangladesh’s first batter to fall. He attempted a fancy reverse sweep but failed to connect with the ball properly. His opening partner, Tanzid Hasan, managed to survive the early moments at the wicket but failed to carry on, making only 15.
The onus fell on the middle order to carry the team forward, but they could not reach even a double-digit total. All three Bangladeshi middle-order batsmen fell for one-digit scores.
Both Najmul Hossain and Mushfiqur Rahim failed to respond the way they needed.
Eventually, Bangladesh tumbled for 142 runs and lost the match by 87 runs. In the next match, they will face Pakistan at the same venue. With the chance to qualify for the next phase now slim, Bangladesh may need to aim to end the World Cup on a high note.