Bangladesh’s last ditch fight came to an end when Taskin was adjusted lbw leading India to a comfortable victory by 208 runs. The spirited performance by the Tigers is praiseworthy but there were so many things that also went wrong for Bangladesh. Bangladesh deserves to play more away Test matches as they will only get better with time.
First Session –
Bangladesh’s objective was to survive the day. They lost 3 wickets yesterday but still had enough batting in their armoury to salvage a draw. To get anything out of the game they needed Shakib and Mahmudullah to occupy the crease for as long as they could. However, it didn’t take long for India to get their 1st wicket of the day. Shakib was caught at short leg as he was undone by Jadeja’s spin and bounce. Mushfiqur Rahim walked in to join Mahmuduallah, hoping to replicate the first innings performance.
The pair batted along well and were looking comfortable – except few edgy moment for Mahmuduallah – but have been surviving well. Bangladesh did not want Ashwin to settle down as Musfiqur charged him for a beautiful drive through cover to get a boundary. He tried attacking again but this time mishits it and gets caught by the mid-off fielder. It was absolutely not needed as he was going so well – a moment of lack of concentration leading to giving away his wicket – it was very poor from Mushfiqur. A big blow in the race of surviving the test match.
Sabbir Rahman walked in with a huge responsibility on his shoulder. Technically, this is the last recognised batting pair with Miraz and tail-enders to follow. A quick wicket here would put India very close to their win. Mahmudullah reached his first 50 since 2015 – getting back to form maybe. Both Mahmudullah and Sabbir survived at Lunch, with Bangladesh on 202/5. India had already sent half the Bangladeshi side packing and would hope to wrap it all up in the next session. The wicket of Shakib and Mushfiqur was a huge blow for Bangladesh.
Second Session –
Survival had to be the game for Bangladesh. The pitch seemed alright with few odd movements here and there. Bangladesh needed Sabbir and Mahmuduallah to bat the entire session to give them a hope of drawing the game. It was not long after the lunch break that Sabbir was trapped in front of the wicket and adjusted lbw – he reviewed for the sake of it but it was plumb. India just 4 wickets away from their win.
Mehedi Hasan who played an important role in the first innings would need to replicate or even outperform his innings to take Bangladesh home safely. Mahmudullah tried building a partnership with Mehedi before top-edging a short ball from Ishant to get out on 64 runs – hope this doesn’t automatically guarantee’s his place for the next series. Rabbi was promoted up the order – not a lot expected from the tail enders. It was just a waiting game for India at this point.
Rabbi and Mehedi were doing all they can to save the match. Mehedi was dropped but he continued to do something special for Bangladesh. Rabbi came in with a plan, he was blocking everything coming on his way – took him 29 balls to get off the mark. The pair nearly survived 14 overs before Mehedi was caught. India inching ever closer to their victory. Taijul came in and stayed for nearly 7 overs before top-edging and getting out just couple of overs before tea.
The session was then extended by half an hour, allowing India to finish things off before the tea break. Taskin survived for a while before being trapped lbw – confirmed by DRS to give India a victory by 208 runs. Rabbi was left stranded on the other end and remained unbeaten on 3 runs off 70 balls – superb resilient innings from the tail-ender – something the top order batsmen could learn.
The match has been a learning curve for Bangladesh. There were quite a few positives and few things that went wrong. Lack of red ball cricket could well be a reason for that. It was always going to be difficult to beat India on their home turf where teams like New Zealand lost 3 nil, England lost 4 nil. Bangladesh did put in a fighting performance which they can be proud of but the defeat could have been avoided if the mistakes were kept to a minimum.
Bangladesh needs to learn from the mistakes to get better. There are lots of potential in the team and if the mindset can be sorted then success won’t be far off. Time to build on this experience and prepare for the next series against Sri Lanka – expecting it to be a cracker of a series.