BRIEF SCORES: Bangladesh: 156 for 5 in 20 overs (Mahmudullah 49 not out; Adam Zampa 3/23); Australia: 157 for 7 in 18.3 overs (Usman Khawaja 58; Shakib Al Hasan 3/27, Mustafizur Rahman 2/30).
Australia beat Bangladesh by three wickets in their Super 10 Group 2 cricket match of the ICC World Twenty20 in Bengaluru on Monday.
Earlier, middle-order batsman Mahmudullah top-scored with an impressive 49 not out off 29 balls as Bangladesh shook off a wobbly start to post a decent 156 for five.
Put into bat, Bangladesh made a poor start as they were reduced to 26 for 2 in the sixth over but a fine contribution from Shakib Al Hasan (33 off 25 balls) and a late flurry from Mahmudullah took them to a fighting total in their crucial match.
Bangladesh batsmen struggled for most part of their innings and they shook off the shackles only in the last five overs with Mahmudullah taking charge. They added 52 runs from the final five overs to cross the 150 mark after they were placed at 104 for 4 at the end of the 15th over.
Mahmudullah, who hit seven fours and a six in his unbeaten knock, took the responsibility of taking Bangladesh to a fighting total after Shakib's departure as he played some exquisite shots towards the end.
He and wicketkeeper Mushfiqur Rahim (15 not out) had an unconquered sixth wicket stand of 52 runs as they frustrated the Australian bowlers who had done a fine job till then.
Rookie pacer Adan Zampa grabbed three wickets for 23 runs in an impressive bowling spell while Shane Watson took two wickets for 31 runs.
Bangladesh, who lost their opening match against Pakistan, were on the backfoot even before the start of the match as in-form opener Tamim Iqbal was left out as he was unwell, adding to their woes after the suspension of Taskin Ahmed and Arafat Sunny due to illegal bowling actions.
Bangladesh were denied a strong start with Shane Watson claiming the wickets of opener Soumya Sarkar (1) and one-down Sabbir Rahman (12).
A 37-run stand between the other opener Mohammad Mithun (23) and all-rounder Shakib repaired the Bangladesh innings a bit but the Australians bowlers did not allow their opponents to score freely.
Shakib, for a brief period, threatened to take the fight against the Australians with a few lusty blows, including a four and six off Adam Zampa in consecutive deliveries, but Bangladesh batsmen were found wanting to get the big shots.
After Shakib was out in the 16th over, Mahmudullah took the responsibility of first steadying the Bangladesh innings for a while and then taking to a fighting total.