Bangladesh v Pakistan, 2nd Test, Mirpur, 2nd day December 18, 2011

Pakistan fight back on curtailed day

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Pakistan 87 for 1 (Taufeeq 44*, Azhar 26*) trail Bangladesh 338 (Shakib 144, Shahriar 97) by 251 runs
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

Shakib Al Hasan and Mushfiqur Rahim frustrated Pakistan in a truncated morning session, but the visitors levelled the game over the next two sessions. Bangladesh's fragility was once again on display after lunch, as the final five wickets went down for 33 runs after which Pakistan's top order responded strongly.

Until the Bangladesh lower-order collapse in the afternoon, the only impediment to the home side's progress had been the fog in Mirpur, which wiped out an hour's play. Shakib and Mushfiqur crafted a slow-and-steady stand once it cleared, to give the small but vocal crowd something to cheer about on a chilly morning.

Shakib made his highest first-class score and was headed for Bangladesh's record individual Test effort when he was run-out. Mushfiqur took a few quick steps before stopping and sending Shakib back, but a direct hit from Taufeeq Umar, running in from mid-on, was enough to snap the partnership at 82. Shakib walked off, after several glares at his captain over the poor calling.

Whether that had an effect on Mushfiqur is hard to tell, but the very next delivery, he gloved a catch down the leg side to the wicketkeeper which left two new lower-order batsmen at the crease, and Pakistan sniffing a quick end to the innings. Elias Sunny and Shahadat Hossain rode their luck in a brief, entertaining stand - Sunny survived as an Umar Gul delivery kissed off stump without disturbing the bails, and Shahadat was put down by Abdur Rehman at deep midwicket.

The innings ended in a hurry, though, as Saeed Ajmal's doosra proved too much for the tailenders, and a run-out curtailed Nazmul Hossain's first Test knock in seven years to a single delivery.

In contrast, Pakistan had little to celebrate in the morning. There was little movement on offer for the quick bowlers and even with the second new ball Gul and Aizaz Cheema couldn't get any major deviation. With the old ball, Pakistan's dangerous spin pair of Ajmal and Rehman got some turn, but were blunted by Shakib and Mushfiqur.

Shakib hit only one boundary in the first session, and survived several lbw calls and an outside edge that landed short of slip. While he was circumspect, Mushfiqur was more enterprising. There was a powerful swipe over midwicket for six off Ajmal, and he picked up several boundaries with his favoured cut shot. They took Bangladesh past 300 in Tests for only the second time since May 2010, but their back-to-back dismissals restricted the innings to a far lower score than expected.

There was something to buoy the home side as they went in for tea. They removed Mohammad Hafeez, who has had a great run in 2011, including a big century in the previous Test. He had begun ominously, swatting consecutive boundaries in the third over, but nicked Nazmul's first ball in Tests in seven years, to be dismissed for 14.

Bangladesh's bowlers gifted easy runs till late in the final session, when the spinners Shakib and Mahmudullah kept the batsmen in check. There was an early close call for Azhar Ali, who unwisely shouldered arms to a delivery that nipped in from Robiul, narrowly avoiding a supremely confident shout for lbw. He wasn't at his most assured against the spinners either, beaten several times by the big turn Shakib was extracting, and once edging just wide of the slips.

Taufeeq Umar was more confident, initially capitalising on the loose deliveries on offer. There were plenty of cuts and drives as he picked up eight boundaries on his way to 44, before bad light expectedly ended play an hour early. There's still plenty of work to do for the Pakistan batting but with their increasingly reliable middle order, they will fancy their chances of overhauling Bangladesh's total.

Siddarth Ravindran is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • dummy4fb on December 19, 2011, 3:30 GMT

    i although we can expect shakib and nafees saving the match even in the second innings. Full team needs to be on fire or so if they want to win. it is a great chance acconding to the conditions and wicket (which we often complain about). we want a BIG start from tamim and nazim. But for the job at hand, i hope the bowlers pack up the pakistani batsmen quickly. finally, congratulations to pakistan and bangladesh that we will be seeing international cricket in pakistan once again. best of luck Tigers and BCB and PCB!

  • dmqi on December 19, 2011, 2:45 GMT

    I agree with one comment below that the way Sakib looked at Musfiqur after being run out was quite indecent. He has said later on that run out is a part of the game. So, he made a mistake by giving a bad look at his captain. We need to learn many things from other test playing nations. You guys have played many years, so we expect better attitute from all of you. When you are out by playing cheap shot, spectators do not look at you in such ways.

  • mainul079080 on December 19, 2011, 2:35 GMT

    Same feelings Irfan Rainy.Pakistan hasn't recovered yet the loss of Waqar,Wasim,Shoib,Aasif,Aamer.Even an out of form Shoib is better then Gul,Junaed,Cheema.This pace attack can suffer seriously against England.Pak's main problem is-when opposition builds a partnership after quick loss of 3/4 wickets and when Pak seems on top,Pak bowlers loosens up the tight rope.They suddenly looks ordinary,lacks venom of a quality bowler and opposition recover to strangulate them.Pak should find real aggressive fast bowler like Stein,Lee,Anderson,Malinga.Their spin attack is the best of all at this moment.If fast bowling becomes the same...i m flying....

  • balajik1968 on December 19, 2011, 1:58 GMT

    It's too optimistic to hope Bangladesh will win. First point: this is the stablest Pakistan has been in a long time. They have quite a few grafters. BD are also notorious for 2nd innings collapses. Weather permitting, we can see another Pakistan win.

  • dummy4fb on December 19, 2011, 1:35 GMT

    Bangladesh has done so far well as compared to their miserable debacle in t20& One dayers against Pakistan!Their338 is pretty far away from Pakistan's87/1.Pakistan has to perspire a lot before surpassing BDin this Match.Shakkeb&Shariar have donevan outstanding job& with bowling with good line & length with available Pacers&Spinners,it doe not seem to be a Herculian Task to send Pakistan back to Pavilion unless Umar Akmal,Misbah& Y.khan do their job once again well.Umar is the one strong& good Player to to be on the guard for BD Bowlers& fielders!All the Best to both Teams! SreedharanMundanat

  • dummy4fb on December 19, 2011, 1:30 GMT

    Well its good to see some optimistic BD Fans putting up comments and are very confident that their side will snap this test away from the Green Shirts but Just to do a small reality check here, its not gonna happen, the very best BD can do is to draw this test. As far as Pakistan pace bowling is concern InshaAllah they will do good, they are only relaxing at the moment and are saving their legs for the England tour. I did not watched a single game out of this whole series coz it was boring, BD need to work hard and they have to raise their level up, BD Premier leauge will get them new talent if Selectors and Couch do good so here is your chance to spot new talent and polish them. I wish you all good luck to my BD brothers.

  • dummy4fb on December 18, 2011, 23:04 GMT

    Hmmm after watching P..n look v ordinary in the morning session; it doesn't bode well for England series. The new ball bowling was v pedestrian indeed, lacking speed ( only 130kmh on ave), hardly any seam and way too many balls that could be left alone. Where is P..n's PHILANDER etc ? If we don't get the seam bowling up a notch we will struggle against top quality batting after all we have only beate ave to poor test teams this year. Anyone feel the same way too ?

  • Bang_La on December 18, 2011, 22:37 GMT

    while all or most of you are talking about a draw or a result, my concern is how Bangladesh will perform in second innings? the record speaks very little about consecutive good Bangladesh innings.

  • dummy4fb on December 18, 2011, 20:38 GMT

    shakib and nafiz good play fot mirpur test. I hope they will be good play next innongs. Best of luck.

  • shafiqo on December 18, 2011, 20:29 GMT

    BD should make sure to check runs first. Slower run rate for Pak will create opportunity for a draw first of all. After tea, spinners should go for a kill to create window for a possible win. BD will have to make at least 260-280 in the 2nd innings to win or save this match.

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