DHAKA: Left-arm spinner Ajaz Patel ran through Bangladesh’s top order with a career-best 4-16 as New Zealand clawed their way back into the five-match Twenty20 international series with a 52 run win in Dhaka on Sunday.
Bangladesh were bowled out for 76, their second-lowest T20 total, with Patel and Cole McConchie (3-15) bundling out the hosts on a slow wicket at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium.
Bangladesh were looking to secure their first-ever T20 series triumph over the Blackcaps after winning the first two games.
They got off to a flying start in chase of New Zealand’s modest score of 128-5 when Mohammad Naim blasted Jacob Duffy for two fours in the first over.
But the innings unravelled from there.
McConchie trapped opener Liton Das leg-before for 15 to get the Blackcaps up and running before Patel dismissed Mahedi Hasan and Shakib Al Hasan in the same over.
There was no looking back from there.
All-rounder Rachin Ravindra bowled Naim before Patel dismissed skipper Mahmudullah Riyad and Afif Hossain off consecutive balls to leave Bangladesh reeling at 43-6.
Mushfiqur Rahim tried to salvage the chase but was left standing alone on 20 after Colin de Grandhomme picked up the final wicket.
“A very good performance. We were able to build partnerships with the bat even though we lost wickets up front, got to a par score and bowlers did a fantastic job,” New Zealand skipper Tom Latham said.
Henry Nicholls top-scored for the Blackcaps with 36 off 29 balls, marshalling his team’s recovery in an unbroken 66-run sixth-wicket stand with Tom Blundell (30) when New Zealand were teetering at 62-5.
Medium-pacer Mohammad Saifuddin was the home team’s best bowler with 2-28.
“Bowlers did a great job to restrict them. We started well with the bat but couldn’t capitalise and lost wickets in a cluster. Hopefully, we will be back strong next game,” Bangladesh captain Mahmudullah said.
The fourth match of the series will be held on Wednesday.