Zimbabwe captain Hamilton Masakadza has hailed his side’s terrific 151-run victory over Bangladesh in the first Test played at the Sylhet International Cricket Stadium, describing it as a “special and proud moment”.
Not only was it his first win across all formats since he was appointed captain mid-year, this was also Zimbabwe’s first Test victory in five years and the first one abroad since November 2001, when they beat Bangladesh in Chittagong by eight wickets.
The victory in Sylhet is also Zimbabwe’s 12th Test win overall and only the third abroad.
“I am absolutely thrilled as this is my first victory as captain and first Test victory away from home as well,” Masakadza, who led the team from the front with crucial knocks of 52 and 48, said after the match.
“This is a really proud and special moment for me, the team and our nation. I am really excited and really chuffed for the boys – they have worked hard and they deserve this one.”
Before this Test series, Zimbabwe had come close but still failed to cross the line in some of their limited-overs matches against South Africa and Bangladesh.
“I felt it had been a long time coming, thought we have been due, we have been getting ourselves into good positions ever since the South Africa tour, even in the one-day series here, but just not carrying on,” Masakadza said.
“But I felt the guys stuck to their task well this time round and really finished off the game which is what we have been failing to do. We got ourselves into a good position again but we pulled through this time.”
Sean Williams, who was named player of the match for his two good knocks of 88 and 20 on a tough surface, was ecstatic after helping the team to the historic victory.
“I am ecstatic to have won this Test match in Bangladesh, the first time winning away from home. It’s a great feeling giving us goosebumps all round,” Williams said.
“I would like to thank my team for a really hard-fought game, extremely tough game,” he added.
“And to all the fans for sticking with us, thank you for the support, thank you for the kind messages that we have been receiving throughout this tour and hopefully this continues.”
Sikandar Raza, who took six wickets in the match, said the victory was incredible for a side that had not played Test cricket in almost a year.
“This victory speaks volumes of our character, courage that all the boys have showed out there,” the all-rounder said.
“Some people may still be – and I am one of them – living in the nightmares of the (World Cup) qualifiers but this will take the edge off them.
“The highest format is Test cricket and for all those people who have been supporting Zimbabwe through and through this is a reward that maybe we can give to them to move forward and thank them for their continued support.
“Personally, it just feels brilliant and it is humbling that we have won a Test match in Bangladesh. A lot of countries have not done that and for a Zimbabwe team that does not play too much Test cricket – we last played almost a year ago – to beat them by 151 runs it is just magical.”
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