Najmul XI beat Tamim XI comprehensively by 9 wickets in the intra-squad practice match in John Davies Oval, Queenstown on Tuesday. Half-centuries by Liton Kumar Das, Mushfiqur Rahim and Mehidy Hasan Miraz paved the way to victory.
Batting first, Tamim XI posted a total of 233 for 5 in their 50 overs.
Opener Nayeem Sheikh went back to the pavilion very early scoring only 12 runs. However, Mithun's unbeaten 66 runs and a local New Zealand batsman Benju Culhane's unbeaten 46, helped Tamim XI to gather 233 runs at the end of the innings.
Mahmudullah Riyad scored 35, while Sheikh Mahedi Hasan got out for 38 runs. Soumya Sarkar started well but failed to go big as he returned with 28 runs.
Tamim Iqbal did not come on to bat.
Pacer Rubel Hossain bagged 4 for 42, while Saifuddin picked the other one.
Najmul XI chased down the target quite easily in the end, losing only one wicket. Skipper Najmul Hossain Shanto retired after scoring 40 runs.
Liton and Mehidy also retired after bagging their half-centuries, respectively. Mushfiqur remained unbeaten on 54 as he finished the game off with Mohammad Saifuddin, who was unbeaten on 16 runs.
They still had 19 balls in hand.
All-rounder Mmehidy Hasan Miraz said that the morning weather helped the pacers. He mentioned Rubel and Mustafizur getting help from the conditions in the early morning. He also seemed confident after playing an intra-squad practice match before the main battle.
"The weather was a little cloudy, and as expected, it helped the fast bowlers in the early morning. Rubel bhai maintained good line and length, and he got his rewards. Other pacers did pretty well, too," Miraz said.
"We've been practising here for a few days. We practised in Christchurch for about a week as well. This match was important to boost our confidence before the main series. Alhamdulillah, we all are feeling good and played the game with positive energy," he added.
Five local New Zealand cricketers played in the match - two for Tamim XI and three for Najmul XI.
Tamim XI 233/5 in 50 overs: Naim Sheikh 12, Soumya Sarkar 28, Mahmud Ullah 35, Sheikh Mahedi 38, Benji Culhane 46 not out, Md Mithun 66 not out; Rubel Hossain 4/42, Saif Uddin 1/40
Najmul XI 235/1 in 46.5 overs (Najmul Hossain Shanto 40 retd, Litton Kumar Das 59 retd, Mushfiqur Rahim 54 not out, Mehidy Hasan Miraz 50 retd, Md Saifuddin 16 not out; Mustafizur Rahman 1/21
Result: Najmul XI won by 9 wickets.
Tamim XI: Tamim XI: Tamim Iqbal, Naim Sheikh, Soumya Sarkar, Mohammad Mithun, Mahmudullah Riyad, Sheikh Mahedi Hasan, Nasum Ahmed, Mustafizur Rahman, Taskin Ahmed, Al Amin Hossain and one New Zealand batsman and one bowler.
Najmul XI: Liton Kumar Das, Najmul Hossain Shanto, Afif Hossain Dhrubo, Mushfiqur Rahim, Mehidy Hasan Miraz, Mohammad Saifuddin, Shoriful Islam, Hasan Mahmud, Rubel Hossain and three local New Zealand cricketers.