Dhaka Test, Day 1
First Session –
Imrul Kayes cutting a short and wide ball straight to point was not something Mushfiqur Rahim was hoping when Bangladesh finally managed to win a toss in this series and deciding to bat first. With already 1 down in the 3rd over, Mominul Haque, a short man with tons of potential needed to do what he does really well – play a long innings. The man lived up to his reputation as he and Tamim, absolutely tormented the English bowlers, at times making it look so easy to score runs. The pair added 100 runs partnership during the first session with a bit of luck on their side. Especially, Tamim who survived at 2 different instances due to DRS (Dharmesena Review System). Bangladesh clearly finished the first session on top scoring 118 runs with the loss of one wicket as they headed for their biryani. At this point, there was every reason to be confident that Bangladesh would go on to score a decent amount of total to challenge England.
Second Session –
Peeep! Biryani break ends and the players head off to resume the second session. As a Bangladeshi fan, it is always worrying especially when the players come out to play after lunch break as we tend to lose wickets quite often. To put me to shame, Tamim and Mominul kicked off their innings just how they were going before the break. Delightful shots played around and milking runs by knocking around. It looked very easy.
150 runs partnership – Tamim getting his century whereas Mominul getting his half-century. Everything was going well until the moment when Tamim fell asleep (possibly the biryani effect). Ali bowled a flat delivery which was going into the left hander but Tamim misjudged it and was trapped leg before wicket. As you can guess Tamim had to go for Dharmesena Review System for obvious reason. However, this time Dharmesena was spot on and Tamim had to walk back. The 170 run partnership ends but plenty of batting to come, why worry? And then after a short while, Mominul falls asleep and misjudges one and gets cleaned up. Anxious moment as both the set batsmen were out and now it was all up to Riyad and Shakib to build another partnership. Riyad came, Riyad hit a six and Riyad left. The threshold for a collapse is when we lose 5 wickets, we lost 4 now – still had a hope especially with the next batsman walking in was Mushfiqur Rahim. The captain playing his 50th Test – he is going to smash it, not to worry. Mushfiq came, Mushfiq was floored by Stokes bouncer, Mushfiq danced and Mushfiq left. All hopes on the ‘nearly’ hero of the Chittagong test. Sabbir Rahman, has to be the last hope to build a partnership with Shakib. Didn’t take long for the hopes to be shattered – Stokes reverse swinging ball was just too much for him as he was caught behind by the keeper. Bangladesh have lost 5 wickets in a blink of an eye. To make things worse at that point it was Hom who stepped in. Not really sure how he even gets close to the playing 11, this is beyond me – that itself is a whole different discussion. For the team’s sake hoped that Hom would survive. And blimey he did manage to scrap through till lunch. From a commanding position of 171/1, Bangladesh were 205/6 at the end of ‘cha-biskoot’ time. An embarrassing collapse yet again. Shakib was still out which was a glimmer of a hope – however, his dance in the first innings of 1st test didn’t fill me in with full of confidence. Still prayed and hoped.
Third Session –
‘Cha-biskoot’ done – Players back in the field, fans praying for a miracle. An idle plan at this point would have been to bat till the end of the day and accumulate as many runs as possible. However, Sir Hom had other ideas, he attacked, scored a boundary and went back to the dressing room for some more cream ‘biskoot’. Miraz, the sensational 19-year-old, walks into the middle hoping to salvage something. He is no mug with the bat and fans were hoping for him to provide the vital support that Shakib needed in the other end. Miraz trapped lbw after just facing 6 balls. Bangladeshi fans want’s him to be the next number 1 all-rounder but seem’s like he is taking the number 1 too seriously. He has been out on the score of 1, three times now. Seeing the back of Miraz, Shakib falls in the next over. The misery finally ended when Kamrul fell for naught yet again after facing 10 balls. An embarrassing collapse to say the least. Bangladesh lost nine wickets for 49 runs in 22.5 overs. The blame lies to the biryani that they had during their lunch time. A disappointing end to a promising start – How often have we heard this relating to Bangladesh? Too often, sadly. Where one thought Bangladesh would post a healthy first innings total, it crumpled to 220 all out.
There was some time left before the end of the day as Bangladesh hoped to pull themselves back into the game. England batsman were all set for their innings and on high confidence after a terrific turn around with the ball. Unsurprisingly, Miraz took the new ball. Shakib took the responsibility of the other end and was hacked for 6 in his second delivery by Duckett. Shakib came back strongly to send him back to the pavilion 3 balls later. Decent start, before Miraz got spanked by Cook for 3 boundaries in the next over. This did not hurt the young lad’s confidence as he came back in the next over and got the price wicket of Cook with the aid of our old friend Dharmesena Review System. Dharmesena added 3 more to his list of 8 decision which has been overruled in this series – quite embarrassing stats that. Bangladesh managed to finish the rain halted day with the wicket of Gary Ballance, Mehedi being the architect again. England finished with 50 runs on board with the loss of 3 wickets.
It was an eventful day at Sher-e-Bangla stadium. From early wicket to a formidable partnership to a collapse. Even the English followed the trend of collapse and long may it continue for Bangladesh’s sake.
Hoping for a better day tomorrow for Bangladesh i.e. if the rain stays away.
“All images have been taken from ESPN Cricinfo and credit goes to the associated press. “