Bangladesh produced one of their stellar performances yesterday as they beat Australia in the first match of the five-match T20 series at home.
Bangladesh win their first-ever T20I against Australia ✨— ICC (@ICC) August 3, 2021
Nasum Ahmed's sensational performance of 4/19 helps the hosts clinch a 23-run victory in Dhaka 👏 #BANvAUS | https://t.co/PlxU4Zp9fM pic.twitter.com/Wz97VnSuAW
It was Australia, the visitors, who had won the toss and they elected to bowl first. As far as the first innings is concerned, Australia turned up with their A-game as they restricted Bangladesh to 7/131 in the 20 overs.
For Bangladesh, Mohammad Naim scored 30, Shakib Al-Hasan scored a vital 36, while the skipper Mahmudullah couldn't score more than 20.
For the visitors, Mitchell Starc picked two wickets and Josh Hazlewood picked three wickets.
Some shuffling in the ICC rankings!
It was then Australia's turn to bat but what happened could've been anticipated but not in the first match of the series. Only Mitchell Marsh showed up on the occasion, scoring 45 runs, while the rest of the team couldn't get past 15.
For the hosts Nasum Ahmed was the pick of the bowlers, picking four wickets, while Mustafizur Rahman and Shoriful Islam picked a couple each. Australia were bowled out for 108 at the end of 20 overs and lost the games in one of the most exasperating fashions.
Let's have a look at some records that were broken/may get broken in this series.
# Mitchell Starc became Australia's leading wicket-taker after he picked two wickets in the first T20I, surpassing all-rounder Shane Watson. He is only two wickets behind Ravichandran Ashwin and Sunil Narine.
# Shakib Al-Hasan is just four wickets away from becoming only the second bowler in T20I history to have 100 scalps, behind Lasith Malinga who has 107.
# Adam Zampa has now equaled Shane Watson in terms of wickets in T20I and has become the joint second-highest wicket-taker for Australia in T20I.
# The win was also Bangladesh's first-ever win against Australia in T20I. Before this match, the two had played each other four times, with Bangladesh losing all of them.
Before this match, Australia also lost to West Indies 4-1. What is the reason for this Australian downfall? Let's have a look!
Aaron Finch's declining form
Well, the performance of a team does not depend on just one player but it is a captain's responsibility to lead by example.
Aaron Finch has been in poor form for quite some time now and things haven't seemed to change. That's one reason why he was excluded from the squad for the Bangladesh series. Will he be excluded from Australia's ICC World T20 campaign as well?
Finch hasn't been completely poor but it seems that he has lost his image as an explosive batsman that he was once.
Australia need a batsman like him at the top but as things stand, things don't look fine with him.
Exclusion of key players
There are still concerns as to why the likes of Pat Cummins, David Warner, Jhye Richardson, Kane Richardson, Glenn Maxwell, and Marcus Stoinis were excluded from the squad.
The truth is that these players declared themselves unavailable for this tour as well as the one against West Indies citing personal reasons, while Steve Smith was forced out due to an elbow injury, as he wants to focus on the upcoming T20 World Cup and also the Ashes series at home.
These seven players have a massive influence on the team and it is their absence that hurts Australia and Justin Langer the most.
Considering that the five-match series is their last T20I series before the T20 World Cup, it will be interesting to see if these players could make their way into the Australian squad.
However, one possibility could be such that these players play for their franchises in IPL's second leg in UAE, thus getting ample practice for the World Cup as well, as UAE and Oman grounds would be hosting all the World T20 matches. Not to forget, Bangladesh deserve a fair share of credit as well as they have been progressing with their performances despite some integral players not featuring.
Bangladesh were phenomenal against Zimbabwe as they won the only test, whitewashed the hosts in the ODI series, and clinched the T20 series as well. This win against Australia puts them in the driver's seat for the series and it will be intriguing to see how they perform in the upcoming games.
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