Bangladesh washed out in Hamilton
Just when Bangladesh appeared to be warming to their task dismal summer weather today intervened to ruin any hopes of the tourists' atoning for a subdued start to their cricket tour of New Zealand in Hamilton.
Their rematch with Northern Districts on Seddon Park fizzled out between innings when heavy rain forced the abandonment of a contest already reduced to a 41 overs-a-side after two delays.
Northern Districts made a protracted 173 for seven from their reduced allocation, giving Bangladesh an upgraded target of 201 under the Duckworth-Lewis system.
However, Bangladesh will now have to wait until Friday to log more batting practice when they face Auckland in a one-dayer on Eden Park's outer oval.
While their batting required finetuning a their seven-wicket loss to Northern Districts on Sunday, it soon became apparent today that the tourists' bowling and fielding had undergone a significant transformation.
Excellent fielding was instrumental in preventing the home side from breaking the shackles, with opener Nick Horsley and Daniel Flynn trudging off with a degree of consternation after being cut off by spectacular catches.
Horsley, with four boundaries in his 18, unleashed another booming drive to paceman Nazmul Hossain only to leave shaking his head after a diving Mehrab Hossain clung on to a screamer at mid off.
Flynn, on five, also appeared bemused after the diminutive Aftab Ahmed leapt up at point to grasp a slashing cut shot.
Bangladesh continued to chip away before Mark Orchard and newly appointed national under-19 captain Kane Williamson added 73 for the fifth wicket in between rain delays.
Orchard departed soon after the resumption for 43 while Williamson was unbeaten on 47 at the close off 56 balls.
Peter McGlashan and Ian Butler, making his first appearance for the province this summer, fell cheaply as Northern Districts sought quick runs after their allocation was trimmed.
The Bangladesh attack, revamped after Northern Districts overhauled 223 with more than seven overs to spare in the first game, produced an impressive collective performance with pacemen Nazmul Hossain, Shahadat Hossain and spinner Abdur Razzak all striking twice.
A tighter bowling performance was perfectly timed for new coach Jamie Siddons after it was revealed opening bowler Syed Rasal had been ruled out of the remainder of the tour after dislocating a shoulder while fielding on Sunday.
He will be replaced by uncapped left-armer Sajdul Islam.
The three-match one-day series against New Zealand starts in Auckland on Boxing Day though Bangladesh first have a return trip to Hamilton for a charity Twenty20 match against a New Zealand 11 on Sunday.