England have ended Bangladesh’s six-series home winning streak with an impressive 2-1 one-day series win in Chittagong.
It seemed as if the elements were against the game taking place at all, with 44mm of rain falling in the 24 hours before 6am on match day. Indeed, the rain didn’t stop until two hours before the start.
For fans with corporate hospitality booked for the ICC Trophy match at the Kia Oval on June 1st between England and Bangladesh, the match would have made a fascinating spectacle.
Without any of their first-choice top four, England had to chase down Bangladesh’s 278 at a ground where no more than 226 had been caught, and just three days after Bangladesh levelled the series to 1-1 with a win in Mirpur.
Up step 21-year old Ben Duckett, who hit 63 in just his third series game, and series match debutant Sam Billings, 25, who racked up 62 after 106 minutes defending the stumps.
It wasn’t all plain sailing though as England took a wobble with the loss of two in quick succession; captain Jos Buttler being skittled for 25 while and Moeen Ali was caught after 1 run and three balls.
However, Chris Woakes hit the tourists home with a straight six over Shafiul Islam’s head with 13 balls to go. His unbeaten 27 was complimented by Ben Stokes’ mature 47 not out.
Ben Duckett also performed well over England’s batting spell, hitting four fours and a six before being caught on 63.
Woakes’ six to close out the match was a fitting climax to an engaging one-day series that showcased tremendous skill from both sides.
England captain Jos Buttler was proud of how well his squad coped, not only under testing conditions, but without key names like Alex Hales, Jason Roy, Joe Root and Eoin Morgan too.
He told BBC Sport: “In tough conditions, physically and mentally, we've stood up as a young side. To come away with a series win is just reward for that.
“Ben Stokes showed great leadership to take the onus on and be the man there at the end.”
England coach Trevor Bayliss was most impressed by the fact that their two most inexperienced batters were their top-scorers.
“For a young team to come away with a win is fantastic,” he told Sky Sports.
"We played some good cricket. Bangladesh are putting together a good young team and are difficult to beat on home turf.”
Bangladesh captain Mashrafe Mortaza believes that a lot came down to the toss with his spinners having to deal with a lot of dew that stunted the ball from turning.
He couldn’t deprive England of their due credit though, adding: "We fought it out until the end but England were too good. They played really well. All credit to England.”