New Delhi: Pakistan registered their third win in the ICC Cricket World Cup 2023 by defeating Bangladesh by 7 wickets in the 31st match of the tournament played at Eden Gardens Stadium, Kolkata. This was a much-needed victory for Pakistan, who had lost four consecutive matches before this game. With this win, Pakistan moved up to the fifth position in the points table of 10 teams with 6 points in 7 matches. On the other hand, Bangladesh suffered their sixth defeat in 7 matches and was eliminated from the tournament.
Pakistan chased down the target of 205 runs set by Bangladesh with ease, reaching 207 for 3 in 32.3 overs. Opener Abdullah Shafiq and experienced Fakhar Zaman gave a blazing start to Pakistan, adding 128 runs for the first wicket. Shafiq scored 68 runs off 69 balls with 9 fours and 2 sixes, while Fakhar scored 81 runs off 74 balls with 10 fours and 3 sixes. Shafiq and Fakhar became the fourth pair of Pakistan to have the highest opening partnership in World Cup history. Mehdi Hasan Miraj broke the partnership by trapping Shafiq lbw on the first ball of the 22nd over. Babar Azam was dismissed for 9 runs by Taskin Ahmed, while Fakhar was caught by Liton Das off Shakib Al Hasan. Mohammad Rizwan (24 not out) and Shoaib Malik (11 not out) then completed the chase with 105 balls to spare.
Earlier, Bangladesh were bowled out for 204 runs in 45.1 overs, thanks to the fast bowling attack led by pacer Shaheen Shah Afridi, who took 3 wickets for 23 runs with one maiden in 9 overs. Shaheen shattered Bangladesh’s top order and became the fastest bowler to take 100 wickets for Pakistan in ODIs, surpassing Saqlain Mushtaq by two innings. He dismissed Tanjid Hasan lbw with extra bounce and swing, which was his milestone wicket. He also removed Mushfiqur Rahim (4) and Shakib Al Hasan (0) in quick succession, reducing Bangladesh to 26 for 3. Mohammad Wasim Junior then cleaned up the tail-enders and finished with 3 wickets for 38 runs in 8.1 overs. Mahmudullah was the only batsman who showed some resistance, scoring responsible innings of 56 runs off 70 balls with four fours and a six. He shared a 79-run partnership with Liton Das, who scored 45 runs off 64 balls with three fours. No other batsman could cross the double-digit mark for Bangladesh.