Spinners, Mustafizur script Bangladesh’s first-ever T20I victory over New Zealand

Mirpur (Cricinfo): For New Zealand, it was the stuff nightmares are made of. They crashed and burned to 60 all out on a challenging Mirpur surface, failing to utilise their full complement of overs. While they made a good fist of it with the ball, applying the spin choke, they just didn’t have the runs on the board to give Bangladesh the jitters. The hosts overhauled the target with seven wickets in hand and five overs to spare.
There was sharp turn on offer for spinners from both sides, but the conditions weren’t unplayable. The New Zealand batters looked rusty against spin and lost so much ground early that they couldn’t make much of a mark against the pacers either.
This was Bangladesh’s first-ever victory over New Zealand in T20Is, one that helped carry forward their impressive string of home performances from last month where they beat Australia 4-1 in the T20Is.
Rachin Ravindra, on T20I debut, returned to the scene of his maiden Under-19 World Cup campaign from five years ago, looking to give New Zealand a headstart against Bangladesh’s plethora of spin options. Having played every summer in India for a better part of the past five years on raging turners, he was placed well to do so, too.
As long as they were there, Tom Latham and Henry Nicholls showed the top order just how they should have approached their innings. They were decisive in their footwork against spin – going either fully forward or playing right back and playing late. Latham, in particular, used his feet well to smother turn and milk the singles. The pair put together 34, the highest partnership of the innings, before Latham fell.
Having thwarted the spinners, Latham fell to a long hop, failing to control a pull that he hit straight to fine leg to give Mohammad Saifuddin his first wicket.