NZ takes 5th T20 in Dhaka, Bangladesh wins series 3-2

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DHAKA, Bangladesh (AP) — Skipper Tom Latham hit a 37-ball unbeaten 50 as New Zealand beat Bangladesh by 27 runs in their fifth and final Twenty20 on Friday.

However, Bangladesh ended up taking the series 3-2.

Latham’s second fifty in the series was key in helping New Zealand put up a respectable 161-5 in slightly better batting conditions. Bangladesh came up short at 134-8, with Afif Hossain battling alone to make 49 not out.

“Great to finish this leg of the tour on a high,” Latham said. ”The way we were able to piece it all together was (pleasing). We put up close to a perfect performance, took all the learning from the previous games.”

Bangladesh rested four players including allrounder Shakib Al Hasan and pacer Mustafizur Rahman, and New Zealand took advantage by opting to bat first and making an explosive start.

Finn Allen made 41 off 24 as New Zealand reached 50 in the sixth over. He hit left-arm spinner Nasum Ahmed, the host's best bowler in the previous match, for a consecutive four and six in the second over, and treated pacer Shoriful Islam, one of the four changes, in similar fashion. Finn smashed three sixes and four boundaries.

When Rachin Ravindra was run out for 17 and Finn dismissed by Shoriful in the same over, New Zealand stalled until Latham provided a prosperous finish.

Latham struck two fours and as many sixes and was supported by Henry Nicholls (20) and Cole McConchie (17 not out). They helped New Zealand reap 54 off the last five overs.

The Kiwi bowlers then ripped through the Bangladesh top order.

Left-arm spinner Ajaz Patel, 2-21, gave them early control while Ben Sears (1-21) worried the batsmen with genuine pace.

At 46-4 in the ninth over, Bangladesh hit back through captain Mahmudullah and Afif Hossain combining for 63 off 43.

Fast bowler Scott Kuggelejin (2-23), one of three changes by New Zealand, had Mahmudullah caught by Allen for 23 to break the partnership.

Patel came back in his second spell to dismiss Nurul Hasan for 4 and edge the side closer to victory.

Afif was stranded on 49 off 33 with two fours and three sixes.

"Would've liked to win today but happy to win the series,” Mahmudullah said.

“With the chase, we didn't start well enough. Afif and I tried to build a partnership but their bowlers executed really well.”

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