Turning Point of Bangladesh Cricket- ICC Trophy 1997 Champions
April 13, 1997-history was made. Dream that had been nurtured by every Bangladeshi, happened to be true. Today, Bangladesh is getting itself established as one of the most improving cricket playing nations. Bangladesh is now winning lots of matches at home as well as at abroad. But as many matches Bangladesh can win ,it can never overdo the glory of that particular win. Every Bangladeshi ,young or adult ,who were there, can picture the glorious day even today. They might have hardly known about cricket, but the glory that has been earned by the ‘Bengal Tiger’ touched every Bangladeshi.
After Bangladesh beat Scotland by 72 in semifinals, a shocking event just turned the glory into tragedy. A children was dead, many were injured and almost 100 were arrested at the post match celebration at the center of the Dhaka city. While this news reached to the Bangladesh team ,they were greatly upset. They took a kind of oath by themselves that they are supposed to do something for those crazy fans.
The final match was played between Bangladesh and Kenya at Tenga National Complex of Kuala lumpur ,Malaysia. In the rain-affected match, Kenya batted the first innings and they scored 241 for 7. The mainstay of the Kenyan’s innings was their captain Steve Tikolo who scored a more than a handy score of 147 from 152 balls. There was a handy contribution of 43 from Moris Odumbe. The Bangladeshi innings was played in the reserve day . The persistent rain-fall made the game to start at the 2nd day the Kenyans’s had batted. The target set for Bangladesh was 166 in 25 overs .Bangladesh started with a bit of exotic opening pair with Naimur Rahman and Mohammad Rafique. The strategy wasn’t successful as Naimur Rahman was bold in the first delivery he faced.
Minhajul Abedin and Rafique then tried to steady the ship. They built a half-century partnership. Then they just started to lose wickets at regular interval. The match turned into a nail-biting finisher as Bangladesh required 1 run from the last ball of the match. Khaled Masud and Hasibul Hasan was at the crease . Eventually, the last ball hit the pad of Hasibul Hasan & Khaled Masud started to run almost like a blind person. In many interviews afterwards Masud said that the finishing line of the pitch was kind of the destination of his life. Bangladesh won the match and made their way through to world cup of 1999.
The country turned into a festive arena afterwards. People came out of their home and they started to make demonstrations around the city and throw colors at each other. Prime-Minister of that time Sheikh Hasina greatly hailed the team and promised to give every team member a mobile phone and a car.
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