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    Bangladesh women set 141-run target against New Zealand

    New Zealand won the toss, which was delayed by over four hours due to a steady downpour, and elected to bowl against Bangladesh at the University Oval in Dunedin on Monday. The delay in start, which was following hourly inspections despite steady drizzle in the morning following overnight rain, meant that the game was reduced to 27-overs-a-side contest. The powerplay would be the first five overs and two bowlers from each side can bowl at most six overs, while three can bowl five.

    Both teams made a couple of changes each. While New Zealand left out Brooke Halliday and Fran Jonas for Frances Mackay and Hayley Jensen, Bangladesh brought in Sobhana Mostary and Lata Mondal for Murshida Khatun and Sharmin Akhter.

    This is the first time New Zealand and Bangladesh are playing each other in an ODI. The last time they met was in the T20 World Cup two years ago, when New Zealand, despite being bowled out for 91, defeated Bangladesh by 17 runs.

    The hosts are, however, come into this game after a loss against West Indies in the tournament opener.

    Nigar Sultana, who top-scored for Bangladesh then and is leading them now, said they wanted to bowl first as well. “Bowlers did well last time and it is time for batters to show their character,” she said before adding, “It doesn’t change much for us because we were going to play to our strengths.”

    The pitch was a bit damp and had a tinge of grass and commentator Simon Doull reckoned that the ball would skid nicely.

    The World Cup debutants got off to a blistering start as their opening pair of Shamima Sultana (33 runs off 36 balls) and Fargana Hoque stitched a defining partnership of 59 runs in 9.2 overs. Both the batters played some good-looking shots and ran well between the wickets to keep the New Zealanders on toes. After Sultana departed, Bangladesh captain Nigar Sultana walked out in the middle. However, her stay was short-lived as she was sent packing for 11 off 13 by off-spinner Amy Satterthwaite.

    Bangladesh’s leading run-getter in ODI format, Rumana Ahmed (1), too could not contribute much with the bat as Satterthwaite castled her in the same over in which she got rid of the Bangladeshi captain. From 58-0 to 81-3, Bangladesh lost the momentum as the White Ferns’ spinners applied some brakes to their scoring. Hoque and Sobhana Mostary (13 runs off 21 balls) came together to put up a partnership but Mostary had to make her way back to the pavilion in the 22nd over. The opening batter Hoque after scoring a delectable 52 off 63 balls was run out by Frankie Mackay off her own bowling. Towards the end, Salma Khatun (9 runs off 10 balls) and Lata Mondal (9 not out off 10 balls) helped Bangladesh to post 140-8 in 27 overs.

    For New Zealand, Satterthwaite was the pick of the bowlers as she scalped 3-25 in her five overs. She also completed the feat of 50 ODI wickets. Apart from her, Frances Mackay and Hayley Jensen struck with one wicket apiece. Surprisingly, Lea Tahuhu and the Kerr sisters; Amelia Kerr and Jess Kerr, who are considered to be New Zealand’s genuine wicket-takers went wicket-less in the match. There were three run outs in the Bangladeshi innings, out of which two involved Mackay.

    New Zealand: 1 Suzie Bates, 2 Sophie Devine (capt), 3 Amelia Kerr, 4 Amy Satterthwaite, 5 Lea Tahuhu, 6 Maddy Green, 7 Frances Mackay, 8 Katey Martin (wk), 9 Hayley Jensen, 10 Jess Kerr, 11 Hannah Rowe

    Bangladesh: 1 Shamima Sultana, 2 Fargana Hoque, 3 Nigar Sultana (capt & wk), 4 Rumana Ahmed, 5 Sobhana Mostary, 6 Lata Mondal, 7 Salma Khatun, 8 Ritu Moni, 9 Jahanara Alam, 10 Nahida Akter, 11 Fariha Trisna

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