Bangladesh 288-7 (Mahmudullah 128*, Soumya Sarkar 51, Trent Boult 2- 56, Corey Anderson 2-43) lost to BLACKCAPS 290-7 (Martin Guptill 105, Ross Taylor 56, Corey Anderson 39, Grant Elliott 39) by three wickets at Seddon Park in Hamilton.
The BLACKCAPS chased down Bangladesh's 288 with seven balls to spare in the end, but there were tense times first. Martin Guptill's 105 set up the chase, but late wickets and an unfavourable runs / balls ratio had the crowd chewing fingernails, before the cool heads of Dan Vettori and Tim Southee got their side home by three wickets.
In the second innings, the BLACKCAPS chase got off cautious start in the face of a twin spin attack. Then Martin Guptill took two sixes and a four from Shakib Al Hasan in the third over, before Shakib landed two body blows in the fifth.
First, Brendon McCullum holed out to long on for eight – then four balls later Kane Williamson mis-placed a back foot drive, picking out Tamim Iqbal at point, departing for one.
New man Ross Taylor and Guptill set about establishing a partnership after the early carnage. Guptill was finding the gaps in the field and timing the ball, bringing up 50 from 44 balls, then climbing into a series of powerful pulls and cuts.
At the other end, Taylor was taking longer to find his timing, but helped keep the scoreboard ticking over. The pair brought up their 100 run partnership with a strong drive to the fence from Guptill.
As Taylor progressed, he became the fastest BLACKCAP to 5000 ODI runs while Guptill moved swiftly through the 90s. Hearts were in mouths as he went down with severe cramp on when on 99, before bringing up his maiden CWC ton, saluting his team and the stands.
Soon after he was on his way for 105, trying to force the tempo but picking out the man at long on. Grant Elliot injected fresh momentum, helping take Rubel Hossain for 13 runs in one over, while Taylor brought up his 50 from 82 balls.
Elliott went for 39 from 34 balls, finding the man at deep point from Hossain, who’d come back well. Corey Anderson and Taylor were tied down for some time, before Anderson deposited Taskin Ahmed over the straight boundary for six in the 41st to get off the mark.
Taylor was given lbw when on 56, when Nassir Hossain snuck one past his defenses. Luke Ronchi found the boundary twice, but was caught in the deep attempting another in the 45th over.
Dan Vettori was composed, taking a fine boundary through mid wicket, and was dropped on six in the deep going for the big shot. Anderson took a huge six from the first ball of the 48th over mid wicket, but was bowled next ball for 39 trying to repeat, leaving 20 runs from 16 balls needed.
Vettori took the chase in hand, taking two then a crucial six from Nasir Hossain to get the chase under a run a ball. Tim Southee got in on the act with a big six over long off, then worked the winning runs to the cover boundary to hand the BLACKCAPS the win by three wickets with seven balls remaining. Wellington beckons.
Earlier, BLACKCAPS Skipper Brendon McCullum won the toss and elected to field first with the pitch showing a green tinge and the overcast conditions assisting his in-form swing attack.
His bowlers delivered immediate dividends with Trent Boult swinging the ball beautifully to grab the wickets of openers Imrul Kayes (bowled for 2) and Tamim Iqbal (caught Corey Anderson for 13) in an electric start.
Bangladesh were reeling in the opening exchanges at 27-2 in the 10th over.
Mahmudullah joined Soumya Sarkar at the crease at the pair adopted an “attack is the best form of defence” approach, after Anderson dropped the former when he was on just one.
It was an expensive drop as the pair combined for a 90 run partnership. Daniel Vettori, who starred again with 1-42 from his 10 overs, got the breakthrough in the 27th over when Sarkar was caught in the deep by Anderson.
The BLACKCAPS kept pressing Anderson picked up two quick wickets when he dismissed Shakib Al Hasan (23) and Mushfiqur Rahim (15) both caught behind by Luke Ronchi which again halted any momentum the Tigers were building.
But for all the restrictions and wickets during the middle of innings, Bangladesh rallied and took full advantage in the final 10 overs smashing 104 runs in a carefree manner.
Mahmudullah ended unbeaten 128 from 123 balls, with 12 fours and three sixes, picking up the pace after making his ton, principal destroyer at the finish was Sabbir Rahman who struck five fours and two sixes in his whirlwind cameo.