Bloemfontein: Bangladesh have yet to taste victory on their tour of South Africa and Thursday was no different as the home side cruised to a 20-run win in the first Twenty20 International, going 1-0 up in the two-match series.
Chasing South Africa's 195 for 4 at Mangaung Oval in Bloemfontein, Bangladesh finished with 175 for 9 in 20 overs despite a promising start from Soumya Sarkar.
Sarkar walloped five fours and two sixes in his 47 off 31. Regular wickets at the other end, though, hurt Bangladesh, who was more or less at par with the required run-rate while Sarkar was in the middle.
Sarkar was trapped leg before wicket by Andile Phehlukwayo in the 10th over, and after that, things got tricky for Bangladesh.
With Imrul Kayes and Shakib Al Hasan already back in the hut, it was upto Mushfiqur Rahim and Mahmudullah to take the chase forward. But both batsmen fell cheaply, and the visiting side went from being 92 for 2 to to 101 for 5 in the 12th over.
Sabbir Rehman (19 off 16) played a few good strokes, but a rash shot off Beuran Hendricks nipped his cameo in the bud. Mehidy Hasan hit a four and a six to provide some cheer for the Bangladesh fans in the crowd but victory, by then, was a formality.
Earlier, after South Africa elected to bat, Quinton de Kock and AB de Villiers led the side to a strong total.
De Kock hit 59 off 44 and de Villiers made 49 in just 27 to dent Bangladesh's bowling attack. De Villiers hit eight boundaries in his knock while de Kock smashed five boundaries and a six.
South Africa seemed headed for a 200-plus total while de Kock and de Villiers were in the middle, putting on a second-wicket partnership of 79 off 51 balls, but Bangladesh fought back in the middle overs.
Mehidy, the offspinner, took the first two wickets -- of Hashm Amla and de Villiers -- and gave away just 31 runs in his four overs. Rubel Hossain bowled an outstanding 15th over in which he conceded only three runs and sent de Kock back, trapped leg before wicket.
David Miller (25 not out off 19) and Farhaan Behardien (36 not out off 17), however, reclaimed the initiative for South Africa, adding 62 runs in the last five overs.