"--IANS/CMC"
Bridgetown (Barbados), June 15 (IANS/CMC) Opener Imrul Kayes produced an early blitz and Sabbir Rahman unveiled a late one, as Bangladesh have chased down a moderate total to beat West Indies High Performance Centre (HPC) in the first of the two Twenty20 internationals here.

Bangladesh A romped to their 151-run target off just 16.4 overs, with Man-of-the-Match Imrul stroking exactly 50 off 21 balls and Sabbir remaining unbeaten with 41 from 34 balls, reports CMC.

Off-spinner Ashley Nurse finished with two for 32 while seamer Carlos Brathwaite picked up two for 38.

Earlier, out-of-favour West Indies T20 opener Andre Fletcher top scored with 57 and all-rounder Russell smashed 48, as the HPC recovered from a poor start to reach a competitive total.

With wickets tumbling around him, the right-handed Fletcher anchored the innings, facing 43 balls and counting seven fours.

His innings was especially needed after seamers Shafiul Islam (3/22) and Robiul Islam (2/33), destroyed the top order to reduce the HPC to 56 for five in the tenth over.

Fletcher then combined with Russell in a rousing 75-run, sixth wicket stand which rallied the innings and gave HPC a total which they could defend.

Russell, who struck a whirlwind century in the preceding one-day series, hammered five fours and two sixes off just 26 deliveries.

In reply, Bangladesh A were off to a flyer thanks to Imrul whose knock included five fours and four sixes. He put on 54 off 26 balls for the first wicket with Nurul Hasan (18) before he was second out, becoming the first of Nurse's wickets, stumped by Chadwick Walton.

When Bangladesh A lost three quick wickets to slip to 81 for three in the eighth over, Sabbir took matters in his hands in a 55-run, fourth wicket partnership with Shuvagata Hom to carry the visitors to within sight of victory.

Sabbir struck two fours and two sixes in his innings while Shuvagata supported well with 27 off 24 balls, with two fours and a six.

Brief scores:

WI HPCA151 for seven off 20 overs (Andre Fletcher 57, Andre Russell 48; Shafiul Islam 3/22, Farhad Reza 2/27, Robiul Islam 2/33)

Bangladesh AA152 for four off 16.4 overs (Imrul Kayes 50, Shamsur Rahman 41 not out, Shuvagata Hom 27; Ashley Nurse 2/32, Carlos Brathwaite 2/38)

--IANS/CMC

vs/vr


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