Spinner Patel helps New Zealand stay alive in Bangladesh series

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New Zealand's Ajaz Patel (3L) took four wickets to help his team stay alive in their T20 series against Bangladesh (AFP/Munir Uz zaman)
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New Zealand spinner Ajaz Patel said that varying his pace on Sunday was key to his match-winning performance in the third Twenty20 international against Bangladesh in Dhaka.

Left-arm spinner Patel picked up 4-16 as New Zealand defeated Bangladesh by 52 runs to stay alive in the five-match series.

Bangladesh, who won the first two matches of the series by seven wickets and four runs respectively, were dismissed for their second lowest T20 score of 76 runs, chasing New Zealand's modest 128-5.

"For me, it was really about trying to get over the top of the ball today, make sure I bowl the ball into the wicket and make sure I spin the ball hard," said Patel, who was playing only this fifth T20 international.

"So, that was my main focus today and from thereon it was about changes of pace, line and variation, using the crease.

"As a finger-spinner you know that you are limited in terms of how many ways you can turn the ball, but you can definitely use the crease and changes in pace and variations that way to kind of make a difference."

Patel dismissed Mahedi Hasan and Shakib Al Hasan in his second over after Cole McConchie made the initial breakthrough, halting Bangladesh's free flowing start.

He returned to bowl Mahmudullah Riyad and Afif Hossain from consecutive deliveries, which reduced Bangladesh to 44-6 halfway through their innings.

"I was trying to get a read for the player. I knew Mahedi (Hasan) was going to try and take me on, so tried to tighten him up; bowl a little bit quicker and flatter and try to squeeze one through him," said Patel, whose figures were the second-best in T20Is for a New Zealand spinner away from home.

"Obviously, Shakib (Al Hasan) -- we know how dangerous a player he is. So it was about trying to make sure I take some pace away from him."

Bangladesh coach Russell Domingo praised New Zealand's bowling display.

"Obviously, we have been outplayed by New Zealand today. That's the nature of this format," he said.

"Full credit to New Zealand. They were much smarter and much better with their skills today than us. I'm disappointed but that's the nature of the game."

The fourth match of the series will be held on Wednesday on the same ground.

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