Image Source : GETTY IMAGES Australia.

Australia hammered Bangladesh by 28 runs (DLS) to win their first Super Eight game of the ongoing ICC Men’s T20 World Cup in a rain-marred affair at Sir Vivian Richards Stadium in North Sound, Antigua. The win has helped Australia to go past India and claim the top spot on the points table in Group 1.

The game started off with Mitchell Marsh winning the toss and the Aussie elected to field first keeping the forecast for rain in mind. Bangladesh got off to an awful start as Mitchell Starc dismissed Tanzid Hasan Tamim without a run on the board.

The Aussie pacers exercised plenty of discipline in terms of their approach and never allowed the Bangla Tigers to break the shackles. The Bangladesh batters were forced to rely on the rotation of strike to keep the scoreboard ticking as boundaries dried up pretty quickly.

Najmul Hossain Shanto (41 off 36 balls) and Towhid Hridoy (40 runs off 28 balls) ensured that Bangladesh post 140 for the loss of eight wickets – a fighting total on the board. The Bangla Tigers made several attempts to amp up the run rate but the Aussie bowling attack led by Pat Cummins thwarted all those efforts.

Cummins foiled Bangladesh’s attempt to post a sizeable total by picking up a hat-trick – seventh in the history of the prestigious tournament and the first of Cummins’ career. The ODI and Test captain of Australia dismissed Mahmudullah, Mahedi Hasan and Towhid Hridoy on consecutive balls to complete his hat-trick. He was adjudged the Player of the Match (POTM) for his effective spell of fast bowling.

In reply, the Aussie openers David Warner (53* off 35 balls) and Travis Head (31 runs off 21 balls) got their team off to a coruscating start. The Aussie duo killed the chase inside the powerplay with some blistering stroke play. The game was stopped on multiple occasions due to inclement weather but Australia always had their noses in front.

When the rain came back to halt Australia’s progress in the 12th over the Kangaroos were already ahead by 28 runs (DLS) and it turned out to be enough.