Rain played spoilsport in Dhaka as the first One-Day International (ODI) of the three-match series between Bangladesh and New Zealand ended in a no result on Thursday.
The match had been reduced to a 42-over-a-side contest owing to a near two hour rain interruption 4.3 overs into the New Zealand innings at the Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium in Dhaka.
Once play resumed, Mustafizur Rahman and Nasum Ahmed’s exploits on a tricky wicket had placed Bangladesh in a position of power, as the hosts had reduced New Zealand to 136-5 in 33.4 overs.
But rain then stopped the proceedings for the second time and eventually forced the officials to call off the game.
Mustafiz and Nasum impressed with the ball, claiming three and two wickets respectively.
For New Zealand, opener Will Young scored 58 hard fought runs off 91 balls while Henry Nicholls chipped in with 44 off 57 deliveries.
Young and Nicholls were the only Kiwi batters to get into double figures.
Earlier, stand-in skipper Litton Das sent the visitors to bat after winning the toss.
Bangladesh pacers Mustafiz and Tanzim Hasan Sakib had the Kiwi openers under pressure before the first rain interruption.
After play resumed, Mustafiz reaped the rewards for the early pressure with the wickets of opener Finn Allen (nine off 20 balls) and Chad Bowes (one off three balls) in quick succession.
Wicketkeeper Nurul Hasan took a sharp catch in the seventh over to dismiss Allen, making up for failing to hold onto a difficult chance against Young off Nasum in the previous over.
Nurul then took a regulation catch in the ninth over to complete the dismissal of Bowes, who was guilty of flailing his bat at a cutter from Mustafiz.
Young and Nicholls then got together and formed a 97-run partnership off 117 balls which steadied the New Zealand innings.
However, Bangladesh had the chance to end the partnership for 33. In the second delivery of the 16th over, Tanzim struck Young on the pads and went up for an appeal for Leg Before Wicket (LBW).
The umpire turned down the appeal and after consulting with the bowler and the keeper, skipper Litton chose not to review the decision.
However, ball tracking showed that the ball would’ve gone on to hit the wickets.
Bangladesh had to wait for another 12.3 overs before they finally managed break the partnership thanks to Mustafiz.
The left-arm pacer struck Nicholls on the pads and the umpire didn’t hesitate one bit before raising the index finger.
Nicholls’ dismissal brought about two more wickets in quick succession for the Tigers and Nasum, who had been excellent throughout the match, first got the set batsman Young stumped and just one ball later trapped Rachin Ravindra LBW for a duck in the 31st over.
From 113-2, New Zealand were now hobbling at 123-5.
Tom Blundell and Cole McChonchie were trying to rebuild the innings, each batting on eight runs, when rain interrupted the proceedings for the second and final time in the match.
Initially it seemed that the rain interruption would end quickly. The rain would subside for just enough time to make it seem like New Zealand will get to resume their innings very soon before once again returning and forcing the players to head back to the dressing room.
This happened a couple of times before the rain got considerably heavy and with that, all hopes of the play resuming got washed away.
The likes of Tamim Iqbal, Mahmudullah, Soumya Sarkar and Nurul were making their comeback to the Bangladesh team with the match.
The washout robbed them an opportunity to showcase what they can offer to the national team ahead of the World Cup.
The second match of the series will take place at the same venue on Saturday.