Ahead of T20 World Cup, USA stun Bangladesh in Houston

The United States defeated Bangladesh in back-to-back T20I games to seal the 3-match series by 2-1 at Prairie View Cricket Complex in Houston. All three matches of the series were held at a common venue and the USA scripted history on the first match against Bangladesh on 21st May (Tuesday) by 5 wickets to clinch their second victory over a test-playing nation in the T20 format.

Ahead of the T20 World Cup 2024, Bangladesh had to face a severe humiliation and survived from facing a complete whitewash in the series by winning the last game of the series by 10 wickets.

This is a crucial win for the Monak Patel-led USA team before the commencement of the grand tournament. As the tournament’s co-hosts along with the West Indies for the first time, the USA hammered a fully equipped Bangladesh squad by 5 wickets in the first match and by 6 runs in the second game. Consequently, the United States proved to the world that they are capable of offering tough challenges to the competitive teams in the upcoming World Cup.

Bangladeshi medium-pacer Mustafizur Rahman was the only core performer for his side and received the “Player of the Series” award for taking 10 wickets in 3 matches.

Let’s review the performance of Bangladesh and USA cricket team in the recent 3-match T20I series in detail…

Bangladesh Tour of USA 2024 Performances: 3-match T20I Series Review

Here’s how former Aussie cricketer Stuart Law, in his first assignment as the newly appointed head coach, guided the USA to victory in the 3-match T20I series for the first time against a full-member nation:

1st T20I Match (21st May, Tuesday): United States won by 5 wickets

The USA skipper Monank Patel invited the visitors to bat first on a spinner-friendly pitch in Houston.

Riding on Towhid Hridoy’s composed knock of 58 runs from 47 balls (including 4 fours and 2 sixes) and Mahmudulla’s cameo of 31 runs from 22 balls (including 2 fours and 1 six), Bangladesh posted an average total of 153-6 in 20 overs.

Despite a shaky start, Corey Anderson (34 runs from 25 balls – including 2 fours) and Harmeet Singh (33 runs from 13 balls- including 2 fours and 3 sixes) ensured to bat till the end. The duo combination stitched a 62-run partnership that guided USA to reach 156-5 in 19.5 overs and record a historical victory in the T20 format.

2nd T20I Match (23rd May, Thursday): United States won by 6 runs

Bangladesh skipper Najmul Hossain Shanto had high hopes of staying alive in the series after winning the toss and deciding to bowl first. Moreover, the Bangladeshi bowlers Shoriful Islam, Mustafizur Rahman and Rishad Hossain grabbed two wickets each by restricting the USA to 144-6 in 20 overs. Under tricky conditions, the United States  crossed the 100-run mark due to steady performance from these batters such as:

  • Steven Taylor: 31 runs from 28 balls (including 3 fours and 2 sixes).
  • Monank Patel: 42 runs from 38 balls ((including 4 fours and 1 six).
  • Aaron Jones: 35 runs from 34 balls (including 3 fours and 1 six).
  • CJ Anderson: 11 runs from 10 balls (including 1 four).

In response, the USA’s bowling unit fired up with Ali Khan’s fiery performance of 25-3 in 3.3 overs. Whereas, Saurabh Netravalkar and Shadley van Schalkwyk took 2 wickets each. Similarly, Corey Anderson and Jasdeep Singh supported the bowling department by taking each wicket, which restricted Bangladesh’s total to 138-10 in 19.3 overs, to secure a thrilling 6-run victory and lead the series with 2-0.

Najmul Hossain ( 36 runs from 34 balls- including 2 fours and 1 six) was the only top-scoring batter for his side as the rest of the batting unit completely faltered.

3rd T20I Match (25th May, Saturday): Bangladesh won by 10 wickets

Once again the Bangladesh skipper Najmul Hossain Shanto opted to bowl first, hoping the host nation would get restricted to a low total.

Mustafizur Rahman’s 6-wicket haul, conceding just 10 runs in 4 overs (including a maiden over), wrapped up the USA’s innings to a below-average total of 104-9 in 20 overs.

Bangladesh’s opening batters Tanzid Hasan (58 runs from 42 balls- including 5 fours and 3 sixes) and Soumya Sarkar (43 runs from 28 balls- including 4 fours and 2 sixes), conveniently steered their team to a successful run chase by achieving the total of 108-0 in just 11.4 overs.

Conclusion:

In contrast to their first two games, the USA cricket team under the stand-in captain Aaron Jones in the 3rd match, couldn’t achieve a clinical victory and therefore faced a massive loss to Bangladesh by 10 wickets. Still, they rank as the series winner with a 2-1 margin. 

Surprisingly, even after ranking at the 19th position in the world T20I rankings; below other teams like Nepal and Oman; the Americans dominated the experienced Bangladeshis, who are ranked ninth on the list.

Analyzing the above stats, you might have understood that the pitch conditions at Prairie View were extremely challenging to bat on and put up a competitive score. For instance, Bangladeshi batters posted a total of 153 runs in the first match, which is indeed a low score for T20 cricket. However, the United States after facing difficulties in the middle of the innings was saved by a strong finishing performance by Harmeet Singh. Whereas, in the second and third matches, the USA scored 144 and 109 runs batting first.

Especially, the win in this series gives huge momentum for the USA  before the commencement of the mega event in June 2024. Bangladesh are scheduled to play two warm-up matches against the United States; and India before they start their T20 World Cup campaign on June 8 against Sri Lanka. To overcome this shocking loss, the Bangladesh cricket team needs to fight for their vengeance and prove their abilities by winning the warm-up game against the USA on 28th May 2024.