India lifted the Asia Cup trophy for a record sixth time after beating Bangladesh by a comprehensive eight-wicket margin in the weather-hit final at Sher-e-Bangla stadium in Mirpur on Sunday.
Chasing a challenging target of 121 runs in the allotted 15 overs after rain resulted in two-hour delay in the start of the match, opener Shikhar Dhawan and Virat Kohli guided the men-in-blue home.
After the early dismissal of Rohit Sharma, Kohli (41 not out off 28 balls) partnered Dhawan (60 off 44 balls) to stitch a match-winning partnership of 94 runs for the second wicket.
India now has won the continental tournament most number of six times followed by Sri Lanka (5).
Earlier Indian bowlers lost their way in the final overs after an impressive start as Bangladesh rode on Mahmudullah Riyadh's fiery 13-ball 33 to post a competitive 120 for five in their allotted 15 overs.
The match was reduced to 15-over-per side after a spell of thundershowers resulted in a two-hour delay to the start of the proceedings.
The turning point was the 13th over by Nehra (1/33) and more importantly the 14th over bowled by Hardik Pandya (1/35).
14 came off Nehra's over while Pandya was taken for 21 in the penultimate over with Mahmudullah hitting him for a boundary and two huge sixes.
Jasprit Bumrah (1/13) was exceptional at the death while Ravichandran Ashwin (1/14) and Ravindra Jadeja (1/25) also bowled accurately. But Mahmudullah’s slam-bang approach fetched the hosts 42 runs in the last three overs.
In-form Sabbir Rahaman scored 32 off 29 balls but was more subdued than his usual self as wickets fell at regular intervals at the other end until Mahmudullah took the attack back to the opposition camp.
Nehra and Bumrah like every match, gave India vital breakthroughs in the five Powerplay overs, removing Soumya Sarkar (14) and Tamim Iqbal (13) respectively. After Powerplay, Bangladesh’s scorecard read 30 for two.
For Nehra, getting Soumya out was a sweet revenge after he went for three boundaries in the particular over. Tamim had first lofted him for a boundary over extra cover.
Soumya clobbered him straight and also pulled him behind square.
However the seasoned Nehra altered the length in his last delivery which climbed onto the left-handed Sarkar, who tried to pay across the line. Hardik Pandya standing at mid-off, ran a few steps to his left to take an easy catch.
The crowd was stunned to silence in the next over when their big hope Tamim, who tried to play across the line, and was caught plumb in front of the wickets.
Dhoni started the proceedings with Ashwin and brought him again after the end of Powerplay.
Shakib, promoted after the game was shortened, heaved Jadeja to the cow corner for his first boundary while Sabbir Rahaman played a reverse lap shot in the same over.
The 50 of the Bangladesh innings came in 7.3 overs. In the same over, Shakib pulled Pandya for a boundary and then played the lap shot through vacant fine leg region.
The dangerous looking Shakib paid for his pre-determined sweep shot as he offered simple catch to Bumrah at short fine leg off Ashwin.
Bangladesh were reduced to 64 for three.
Mushfiqur Rahim (4) couldn’t properly drag his bat in while going for the second run as Dhoni quickly whipped off the bails off a Virat Kohli throw from the deep.
Skipper Mashrafe Mortaza was caught by Kohli at deep mid-wicket boundary off the very next ball trying to hoick Jadeja leaving the home team in total disarray at 75/5.