Rawalpindi Test: Shan, Babar put more pressure on Bangladesh

Dhaka – Bangladesh continued to struggle – now with bowling – in the first Test of the two-match series against Pakistan in Rawalpindi as Shan Masood and Babar Azam hit centuries for the hosts on Saturday.

At the end of the day-2, Pakistan scored 342 for three in 87.5 overs with Babar Azam and Asad Shafiq batting on 143 and 60 respectively. Pakistan took a 109-run lead with seven wickets in hand.

But Abu Jayed hinted something else at the start of the first innings of Pakistan removing Abid Ali for a duck. Abid had hit two centuries in his first two Tests. So it was one of Bangladesh’s initial targets to pick up his wicket early, coming into this innings.

Abu Jayed landed the ball outside off stump going away from the body. Abid went to drive to the point region but only managed a thick edge to wicketkeeper Liton Das.

It was a big blow for the hosts to lose a quick wicket in reply to a moderate first inning of 233 by the tourists. In the second wicket, Shan and captain Azhar Ali recovered strongly posting 91 runs on the board. They looked to come up with a dangerous partnership. But Abu Jayed came to the scene again and scalped the wicket of Azhar for 34 off 59.

The ball was outside off stump again and Azhar made the same mistake which Abid did earlier. Azhar went to clear the ball to the point area, but the ball kissed his bat before landing in the hand of the only slip fielder Najmul Hossain Shanto.

In the third wicket, Shan and Babar added 112 runs. The stand was broken by Taijul Islam who removed Shan for 100 off 160 balls with 11 fours. Bangladesh had a good chance to turn the game around, but Babar and Asad made another firm stand in the fourth wicket stand as they ended the day adding 137 runs on the board in the partnership.

Babar was dropped at two by Ebadat Hossain who missed a catch in the mid-off area. The right-handed batsman went for a big shot but mistimed completely. The ball was in the sky and Ebadat sprinted to mid-off from his position to take the catch but he ended up spilling it.

While Abu Jayed took two wickets conceding 66 runs in 20 overs, Taijul bagged one conceding 11 in 34 overs.

Earlier, Pakistan won the toss and sent Bangladesh to bat first. The Tigers failed to come up with a good start as both of the openers were removed inside the first two overs of the game.

Five of the Bangladeshi batsmen passed the 25-run mark in their first innings but failed to provide with the big partnerships to post a challenging total on the board. Mohammad Mithun was the highest runs getter hitting 63.

Shaheen Afridi was the most successful bowler of the hosts in the first innings taking four wickets conceding 53 runs while Mohammad Abbas and Haris Sohail bagged two wickets each for the hosts.

Brief score:
Bangladesh 1st innings: 233/10 in 82.5 overs, Mithun 63, Najmul 44, Liton 33, Mominul 30, Mahmudullah 25, Taijul 24; Shaheen 4/53, Haris 2/11, Abbas 2/19, Naseem 1/61

Pakistan 1st innings: 342/3 in 87.5 overs, Babar 143*, Shan 100, Asad 60*, Abu Jayed 2/66, Taijul 1/111.UNB