In one of the most memorable World Cups for the lower-ranked sides, Netherlands recorded its second upset win, outsmarting Bangladesh by 87 runs, and its best-ever showing to push for the game’s popularity back home on Saturday.
Captain Scott Edward’s determined half-century and Paul van Meekeren’s four-wicket haul were the highlights of a fine Dutch show that disheartened thousands of green shirts, including from those across the border, at Bangladesh’s second home – the Eden Gardens.
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Batting first, Netherlands managed 229 and restricted Bangladesh to 142 on a slower track.
Dutch captain Scott Edwards (68) scored his second fifty of the tournament to rescue his side. Fine contributions from Wesley Barresi, who featured in his second World Cup after 2011, and Sybrand Engelbrecht and a cameo from Logan van Beek also helped Netherlands in posting a fighting total.
Bangladesh made early inroads but let off the Netherlands batters due to its sloppy fielding.
Taskin Ahmed, returning from an injury, and Shoriful Islam brought joy for The Tigers by taking two wickets early.
However, the 39-year-old Barresi cut, pulled and drove with confidence to add 59 runs with Colin Ackermann and steady the ship.
Bangladesh dismissed the two in consecutive overs.
Mustafizur Rahman had the prized scalp of Barresi as skipper Shakib Al Hasan ran in from cover to take the skier.
In a role reversal, Mustafizur held Ackermann at short fine-leg off Shakib even as Netherlands, at 63 for four, needed another consolidation.
Edwards was unperturbed even after being dropped twice on zero in a Mustafizur over and getting another lucky escape. Playing each delivery on merit, he ran smartly and sent the loose ones to the ropes on either side to add 44 with de Leede and 78 with fellow hard-working batter Engelbrecht.
Despite witnessing three catches spilled off his bowling, cutter-master Mustafizur hit the right areas to return his best performance (two for 36).
Bangladesh’s reply was utterly disappointing. While the Dutch bowlers, backed by committed fielding, executed their plans well, Bangladesh batters suffered due to their poor shot selection.
After the openers’ dismissal for 19, Mehidy Hasan Miraz (35) played an attacking knock.
But Paul van Meekeren’s three-wicket burst ensured Bangladesh’s collapse. Najmul Hossain Shanto flattered to deceive, Shakib’s special preparation was in vain and Mushfiqur Rahim’s defence was not good enough.
And de Leede removed Miraz, run out, and Mahmudullah, caught, after the duo added 38 runs off 71 balls to keep the fight going. However, Bangladesh couldn’t recover from 70 for six and experienced the humiliation of losing its fifth straight match.
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