Chittagong, March 14: Bangladesh eased to a comfortable 6-wicket win over the Netherlands in their World Cup Group B match with Imrul Kayes' unbeaten 73 guiding his side home in the 42nd over. The Dutch bowlers toiled and struggled for impact with only Tom Cooper able to peg the hosts back with figures of 2/33 in 7.2 overs. Earlier however, Mudassar Bukhari caused a few problems for the Bangladeshi openers, going for 1/14 in 6 overs. But the cool temperament of Kayes steered his side clear of trouble.
Bangldesh's innings didn't get off to an ideal start. In just the fourth ball, Dutch paceman Mudassar Bukhari bowled Tamim Iqbal for a duck and the hosts were 0/1. After biding his time, one-down batsman Junaid Siddique struck the first four in the 5th over off the same bowler. Then Imrul Kayes got into the act, thwacking Adeel Raja for a boundary through extra cover in the following over.
The batting duo steadied the innings by taking ones and two and welcoming the occasional four till in the 14th over, they had brought up their side's 50. Two overs later, Kayes clobbered Dutch captain Peter Borren for two consecutive fours as he and his partner milked 13 runs in all that over. The score had moved onto a healthy 78/1 in 17 overs.
In the 19th over, Kayes was dropped by the keeper off Borren and he went on to make the Dutch pay heavily for that error. But there was some respite for the visitors when the same bowler had Siddique caught at extra cover for 35 off 53 balls. Bangadesh were however, still in a strong position at 92/2 in 20.5 overs.
The new batsman Shahriar Nafees and Kayes then took their side past 100 in the 25th over and pressed ahead. However, in the 36th over, Tom Cooper cleaned up Nafees for 37 off 60 balls and the hosts were 151/3 in 35.5 overs. Captain Shakib Al Hasan then also fell to Cooper, departing for 1. But then the jitters subsided and Mushfiqur Rahim (11) and Kayes (73) saw their side home.
Earlier in the day, sharp fileding from the Bangladeshi and some deceptive bowling from slow-left-armer Adbur Razzak bowled the Netherlands out for 160 in 46.2 overs. Ryan ten Doeschate was the lone figure of resilience for his side remaining unbeeatn on 53 while the Bangldeshis effected four run-outs and Razzak claimed three wickets for 29 runs off his 10 overs.