Proteas secure easy win in Harare

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Proteas skipper Hashim Amla's dashing half-century was enough to see the South Africans record a 39-run win against Bangladesh in the unofficial Twenty20 series in Harare on Tuesday.

Proteas skipper Hashim Amla's dashing half-century was enough to see the South Africans record a 39-run win against Bangladesh in the unofficial Twenty20 series in Harare on Tuesday.

Amla, captaining the side in the absence of AB de Villiers, batted from start to finish and made his 88 not out in 53 balls, ably assisted along the way by Richard Levi (37) and JP Duminy (23 not out off seven balls) as they raced to 209 for three after 20 overs.

Bangladesh had a slim chance of chasing the total at the best of times, but despite a decent start and good knocks from Mohammad Ashraful (33) and Mohammad Mahmudullah (34), and a late half-ton from Mushfiqur Rahim, their wickets fell far too regularly and easily to be of any threat.

The Proteas won the toss and elected to bat, and produced a side not largely different from those seen before. Amla opened with T20 star Levi, fresh off the plane from England, where he is playing for Somerset in the Friends Life t20. The Bangladeshis were without batsman Tamim Iqbal, who picked up a thigh injury, and he was replaced by teenager Anamul Haque.

Levi and Amla put together an opening stand of 70, and reached 50 in little over three overs. Levi was sent packing after sending a ball high into the air and was caught by bowler Ziaur Rahman.

Colin Ingram and Albie Morkel also contributed to the score, with Ingram hitting 29 before being stumped, while Morkel looked uncomfortable in his knock of 22 in 18 balls. Bangladesh did a good job of slowing the run-rate in the latter overs, but Duminy came in and hit 22 off the final over to push the score past 200.

Bangladesh's reply got off to a good start, with 19 runs coming off the first two overs, much to fast bowler Lonwabo Tsotsobe's irritation. He got the last laugh, though, taking a catch off Marchant de Lange's bowling in the third over to get rid of Haque.

Ashraful kept the scoreboard ticking along, and by the sixth over they had lost no further wickets and were on 41. He couldn't keep going, though, and with his score on 33 skied a Tsotsobe delivery and Amla made a superb diving catch.

Jahurul Islam was next to fall, scooping Robin Peterson to Wayne Parnell on the long-on boundary for an easy catch. Nassir Hossain followed on his heels after being dismissed for a duck, caught by Morkel.

Wickets fell at a regular clip, and only Rahim kept a handle on his innings, ending with 50 not out off 32 balls. De Lange and Peterson were the main wicket-takers with two each, while de Lange went for over eight runs an over thanks to Rahim's knock.

The next match sees home side Zimbabwe, who won the first game against Bangladesh, take on the Proteas on Wednesday.

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