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Daily Mirror
Daily Mirror
Matthew Cooper

Superb Dawid Malan hundred steers England to hard-fought ODI win over Bangladesh

England have beaten Bangladesh by three wickets in the first ODI in Mirpur, with the visitors triumphing in a low-scoring game thanks to an excellent 114 from Dawid Malan.

Speaking before the game, England captain Jos Buttler said the series is "exactly the kind of challenge we need" ahead of the World Cup, given the conditions in Bangladesh will be "the closest that we can get to playing in India" where the tournament will be staged.

And the surface in Mirpur was certainly a challenging one, turning so much that spinner Shakib Al Hasan took the new ball and Mustafizur Rahman, one of just two frontline Bangladesh seamers, was not introduced into the attack until the 21st over.

Bangladesh have an excellent record at home and picked up regular wickets defending a total of just 209. Malan, however, was excellent for England as he struck 114, his seventh score of 50+ in just his 16th ODI, to guide his side home and make a compelling case for his inclusion at the World Cup.

After Bangladesh won the toss and opted to bat first, England's bowlers impressed as they bowled out the hosts for 209. Jofra Archer, Mark Wood, Moeen Ali and Adil Rashid all picked up two wickets apiece, while Chris Woakes and debutant Will Jacks also chipped in.

It was particularly heartening to see both Archer and Wood bowling in tandem for the first time in two years, with the pair recording figures of 2-37 and 2-34 respectively and regularly clocking speeds of 90mph. Archer and Wood were key to England's World Cup victory in 2019 and, provided they stay fit, will be just as crucial when they attempt to defend that crown later this year.

Bangladesh's innings was underpinned by a half-century from Najmul Shanto, his first in ODI cricket, with Mahmudullah (31) and Tamim (23) also contributing. And while a chase of 210 would ordinarily seem a rather simple task for the world champions, England found things much tougher on a spinning pitch against a Bangladesh side boasting three excellent spinners in Shakib, Taijul Islam and Mehidy Hasan.

Malan played a lone hand, with debutant Will Jacks the next highest scorer with 26 (MUNIR UZ ZAMAN/AFP via Getty Images)

Jason Roy was the first wicket to go as he ran down the pitch and holed out of Shakib for just four in the very first over of England's chase. Taijul then dismissed both Phil Salt and James Vince cheaply in quick succession, before seamer Taskin Ahmed got the massive wicket of Buttler for just nine.

His dismissal left England in huge trouble at 65-4, with Malan playing a lone hand having initially struggled to get going before finding some fluency. It took him 92 balls to reach his half-century, but he needed just 42 more deliveries to reach three figures.

Although Bangladesh's spinners continued to do damage, with Mehidy accounting for both Jacks and Moeen and Taijul outfoxing Woakes, they could not dismiss Malan and he put England 1-0 up in the series with eight balls remaining by crashing Shanto for four.

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