Match Report:


Bangladesh hold off brave Nepal, confirm date with Australia

Bangladesh have claimed the final spot in the Super Eight after beating Nepal by 21 runs to finish second in Group D

Australia will face Bangladesh in their first Super Eight match after the Tigers confirmed their place in the T20 World Cup's second phase with a hard-fought win over Nepal in St Vincent.

Their spot appeared in jeopardy at the halfway mark after they were rolled for 106 in 19.3 overs by an impressive Nepalese attack that had also held South Africa's powerful batters to 7-115 off 20 overs two days earlier.

A loss to Nepal would have opened the door for Netherlands to sneak through to the Super Eight, although their 83-run loss to Sri Lanka later in the evening confirmed their fate.

Nonetheless, Nepal's batters faltered for the second time in as many days as Bangladesh quicks Tanzim Hasan Sakib took four wickets and Mustafizur Rahman three to dismiss the world's 18th-ranked side for 85 and secure their side a 21-run victory.

The result sees Bangladesh finish second behind South Africa in their pool and they progress to Group 1 alongside India, Australia and Afghanistan. Their first Super Eight match is against Australia in Antigua on Thursday night (10.30am Friday AEST).

"We just wanted to keep things very simple and bowl in good areas," Tanzim said. "We didn't panic, we knew could defend this score and we were very confident about that."

The pitch at the Arnos Vale Stadium provided sharp turn and bounce for the Nepal spinners who shared six wickets after inserting Bangladesh. Leg-spinner Sandeep Lamichanne took 2-17 to reach 100 wickets in T20 internationals.

Conditions also assisted the seamers with swing and often spiteful bounce. Sompal Kami took 2-10 from his three overs for Nepal, including a wicket first ball of the match.

But the tough conditions cut both ways. While Nepal took advantage of them to dismiss Bangladesh cheaply, Bangladesh did the same and to greater effect.

The match provided a catalogue of thrills from the moment Sompal dismissed Tanzid Hasan with the very first ball. For no apparent reason Tanzid decided to charge the bowler who fired the ball hard into the pitch. Tanzid's shot came too late and he only managed to spar the ball back to the bowler.

Nepal let their control slip at the end of the Bangladesh innings when Mustafizur and Taskin Ahmed put on 18 for the 10th wicket including 11 from the 19th over.

Tanzim was superb at the top of the Nepal innings, giving Bangladesh the start they needed.

He bowled Bhurtel with his second ball of the match and dismissed Anil Sah two balls later. Tanzim clashed with Paudel at one point, causing the umpires to caution the Bangladesh captain. But Tanzim had the final say and dismissed Paudel to leave Nepal 3-20 in the fifth over.

Nepal were 5-42 after 10 overs and their hopes of ending the tournament with a win were revived by a 50-run partnership for the sixth wicket between Kushal Malla (27) and Airee (25).

But the veteran Mustafizur (3-7) conceded only one run and dismissed Malla in the 17th over, then bowled a wicket maiden in the 19th, removing Airee (25) to help seal the match. Nepal needed 22 from the last over and lost their last two wickets to the first two balls.

"I think as a bowling unit we bowled really well but as a batting unit I think we could have done better, especially the top-order," Paudel said. "Bangladesh bowled really well with the new ball."

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