Bangladesh steady after late Pakistan fight-back
1st Test, Day 1
Khul, April 28: Bangladesh enjoyed a strong first day on Tuesday with Mominul Haque anchoring the hosts to 236 for four before Pakistan fought back claiming two wickets in the fil session in the first cricket Test.
Mominul (80) became the seventh batsman to score more than fifty runs in 10 consecutive Test matches, joining the league of players such as Indian batting legend Sachin Tendulkar. Just when it seemed that Bangladesh had their noses slightly ahead, Zulfiqar Babar trapped Mominul plumb in front in the fil over of the day to wrest back some initiative for Pakistan at the Sheikh Abu ser Stadium.
Bangladesh rode on a 95-run stand between Mominul and Mahmudullah (49) after losing their openers and used a slow morning to build a solid batting platform.
Pakistan bowlers were disciplined all through and restricted the batsmen from scoring runs freely from the outset of Day 1.
The bowlers generated a number of sharp catching chances but the fielders could not take advantage of most of them after Bangladesh captain Mushfiqur Rahim elected to bat.
Pakistan were unsuccessful in a review in the first over when a leg-before appeal for Imrul Kayes (51) was turned down by the umpire.
The hard-fought first session saw its first boundary in the ninth over when Kayes pulled Juid Khan in front of square leg.
With not much width offered, Bangladesh crawled to 60-1 at lunch on a flat pitch.
Tamim Iqbal (25) and Kayes hung on with a stubborn 52-run opening stand off 162 balls as the rate of scoring went on at a sil's pace at 1.53 an over in the first hour.
Leg-spinner Yasir Shah got the first breakthrough when Tamim Iqbal, dropped on 16, was caught smartly by Azhar Ali at shortleg minutes before the lunch break.
As the on-field umpire called for a no-ball check, Pakistan seemed lucky as Shah was margil in his stepping and the decision could have gone either way.
Bangladesh continued to bat cautiously in the second session before Kayes fell to Mohammad Hafeez.
Kayes seemed a bit assured in the second session and hit two more fours - a cover drive off Shah and a powerful sweep off Hafeez.
He reached his second Test half-century in the 41st over, off the 129th ball he faced.
Then he got a leading edge that allowed Hafeez to take a simple return catch.
Mominul took charge thereafter and paired with Mahmudullah to bring up Bangladesh’s 100 in the 45th over.
Mominul was dropped at 17 when he charged down the track to Zulfiqar Babar in the 46th over and smashed straight back to the bowler who dropped it.
After the tea-break, the 23-year old hit his fifty off 108 balls for his 10th successive Test half-century but Mahmudullah got out caught behind to Wahab Riaz a run away from his own fifty. IANS