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Plays of the Day from the first day of the Chittagong Test between Bangladesh and Pakistan
December 9, 2011
The surprise move
Few things are stranger than a captain winning the toss and bowling first on a subcontinent shirtfront. Opening the bowling with a spinner after attributing the toss decision to early-morning moisture is one of them. Mohammad Hafeez ambled in with the shiny new ball to become the first spinner in 42 years, and the first ever from Pakistan, to bowl the opening over of a Test. The move was sound, given Hafeez had dismissed Tamim Iqbal for two ducks in the ODIs. Misbah's decision to bowl came a few hours after Australia had sent New Zealand in to bat at Bellerive Oval, the first time in six years that they chose to field after winning the toss.
The Bangladesh innings wasn't the best advertisement for shot selection. It ended with a particularly strange stroke from Nasir Hossain. He moved across the stumps and tried to lap Abdul Rehman over the leg side. He could not get entirely under the ball, though, and ended up scooping it from the top of the bat straight up for a simple catch. To add injury to insult, the ball grazed Hossain's jaw on the way up, leaving him in pain.
The commentary gem
Shahadat Hossain is known to grunt as he delivers the ball, and today he was louder than ever. Yet, there was little in the bowling - be it pace, bounce or movement - to suggest he was putting in more effort than usual. After a series balls in the mid-120s, accompanied by increasingly noisy grunts, the commentator Shamim Chowdhary quipped that the decibel levels may have gone up, but little else had.
The confident take
With Pakistan closing in on the lead by the end of play, Bangladesh began to get a little desperate for wickets. Mahmudullah got Taufeeq Umar to repeatedly edge his offbreaks into the offside, but the ball kept eluding Shahriar Nafees at slip. Eventually, one went Nafees' way, and he began to celebrate after pouching it. The umpire wasn't convinced though, and Taufeeq stayed rooted to the crease with a wry smile. Quite rightly, too. Replays confirmed that the ball had landed well in front of Nafees before he collected it.
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