Bangladesh U-19 women’s team made history when they beat Australia by seven wickets in the opening match of the inaugural edition of the ICC U-19 Women’s T20 World Cup at Willowmoore Park in Benoni, South Africa on Saturday.
Bangladesh, who were termed as dark horses before the start of the competition, provided a clinical performance on the field against the mighty opposition and earned two crucial points from their opening Group A match and spectacularly began the tournament.
Marufa Akter and skipper Disha Biswas earlier took two wickets each as Bangladesh successfully restricted Australia to a gettable total after their opposition won the toss and elected to bat first.
Skipper Disha gave Bangladesh a double breakthrough in the game as she removed both the Australian openers early in the innings before Claire Moore and Ella Hayward put up a 76-run stand for the third wicket to take them close to the 100-run mark.
Rabeya Khan finally broke the dangerous-looking stand by removing Moore, who made 52 off 51 balls before Marufa dismissed Lucy Hamilton (two) and Hayward (35) in the 18th over to reduce Australia to 102-5.
Amy Smith (16 off seven balls not out) and skipper Rhys McKenna (12 off six balls not out) then added more 28 runs in the last two overs in their innings to give their bowlers something to fight with.
Bangladesh lost opener Rany Saha in the first ball during their chase before Afia Humaira Anam Prottasha (24) and Dilara put up a 66-run stand for the second wicket to steady Bangladesh’s ship.
Dilara was adjudged player of the match for her terrific innings.
Bangladesh will play their next match against Sri Lanka on Monday before they take on USA on January 18 in their last Group A match, all at the same venue.
The top three teams from each group will progress to the Super Six League stage, where qualifying teams from Group A will play against two of the qualifying teams from Group D, and qualifying teams from Group B will play against two of the qualifying teams from Group C.
The top two sides from each of the Super Six Leagues will progress to the semifinals, with the final taking place on January 29.
Meanwhile, in the day’s other match, UAE beat Scotland by six wickets in their Group D match at Willowmoore Park B Field in Benoni.