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Liton’s ‘lit’ year

The year 2020 has been groundbreaking for Bangladesh opener Liton Das, who shackled ODI records in the year.

It is fascinating as well as extraordinary how one particular series can define one’s full year. It has been that kind of year, after-all .

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It could have been a long, probably even greater year for Liton and Bangladesh if the pandemic had not raged the globe. The Tigers could only play four T20Is, three ODIs and two Tests this year.

The three-match Bangladesh-Zimbabwe series in March was by far Liton’s best outing in international cricket, scoring 311 runs at an average of 155.5 including two hundreds. He then went on to score two fifties in the two-match T20Is against the same opposition.

Liton made 128 not out (retired hurt) and 5 in the first two ODIs. Three days later after Tamim Iqbal broke his record 154 to make 158 in the second ODI, Liton unleashed all his skills to notch up Bangladesh’s best 176 from 143 deliveries. The 176 remains 2020’s highest score in ODI cricket.

Top individual scores in ODIs in 2020:

Liton Das (Bangladesh) 176 vs Zimbabwe, Sylhet, March 6
Tamim Iqbal (Bangladesh) 158 vs Zimbabwe, Sylhet, March 3
Paul Stirling (Ireland) 142 vs Ireland, Southampton, August 4
Steve Smith (Australia) 131 vs India, Bengaluru, January 19
Craig Williams (Namibia) 129* vs Oman, Al Amerat, January 8
Janneman Malan (South Africa) 129* vs Australia, Bloemfontein, March 4

Liton aggregated 311 runs in that series. His opening partner Tamim made 310. Both were announced players of the series. Liton (155.5) and Tamim (155) have the highest averages (minimum 250 runs) in ODIs this year.

Liton also holds the record of most sixes in an innings in ODIs in 2020, hitting 8 in that famous knock. The right-hander shared an opening stand of 292 runs with Tamim, who made 128, in that game. At the end of 2020, this remains the highest partnership for any wicket.

The year 2021 holds to be one of the busiest years Bangladesh will ever have. The year will begin with three ODIs and two Tests against West Indies at home in January-February before heading to New Zealand for three ODIs and as many T20Is. While, the boards are still in works to rearrange postponed series. And of course, the biggest event of the year will take place in October-November when India hosts the T20 World Cup.

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