Bangladesh national women’s team began their ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup Qualifier campaign on a winning note when they defeated Pakistan by three wickets in a thrilling Group B encounter in Harare, Zimbabwe on Sunday.
Experienced Rumana Ahmed starred with the bat for Bangladesh as she struck unbeaten 50 runs while Ritu Moni and Salma Khatun played two vital innings of 33 and unbeaten 18 runs respectively as the Tigresses reached 202-7 in 49.4 overs to complete the victory.
In a mediocre run-chase, Fargana Hoque and Sharmin Akhter scored 45 and 31 runs respectively before Bangladesh lost the track by losing three wickets in four deliveries to get reduced to 160-7 in 45.3 overs.
However, the experienced duo of Rumana and Salma held their nerves and put up an unbeaten stand of 42 off just 25 balls for the eighth wicket to ensure Bangladesh’s victory with two balls to spare.
Rumana made the difficult task easy when she struck Pakistani pacer Omaima Sohail for three successive boundaries after Salma struck the same bowler for a boundary in the first ball of the 48th over that brought the equation to Bangladesh’s favour – 17 runs off 12 balls.
The duo then struck 12 runs in the 49th over off pacer Diana Baig while they scored the remaining five runs within the first four balls of the final over to secure an impressive win to start the tournament.
Earlier, Bangladesh, who sent Pakistan to bat first in the tournament opener, reduced the neighbouring country to 49-5 in the 18th over before Nida and Aliya put up a 137-run stand for the sixth wicket and rescued their side.
Ritu and Nahida Akter claimed two wickets each while Rumana and Salma took one wicket each in Pakistan innings.
Bangladesh will now face USA in their second match at Sunrise Cricket Club, Harare on Tuesday.
Meanwhile, hosts Zimbabwe suffered an eight-run defeat to Thailand in the day’s other Group B match.