Bangladesh v WI, 1st Test, Chittagong, 1st day October 21, 2011

Bangladesh good, but could have been better


Bangladesh ended the first day on 255 for 4, a solid performance, but their position could have been so much better against a West Indies attack that flagged for periods in Chittagong. The inability to stay focused at crucial junctures - after a big appeal, at the fall of a batsman, celebrations - has often resulted in Bangladesh losing wickets from positions of strength in the past. The challenge of switching on and switching off has been a problem and once again the little distractions played a part in the dismissals of Bangladesh's batsmen.

For the best part of the first hour, Imrul Kayes had found the pace of Fidel Edwards and length of Ravi Rampaul manageable. In Rampaul's sixth over, Kayes ducked under a bouncer and then wafted needlessly at a delivery that was slightly wide outside off stump. He berated himself with a tap on the helmet. His concentration wasn't there, though, and Kayes edged the next ball, which was closer to him, to the wicketkeeper Carlton Baugh. By this time, it was clear that Tamim Iqbal was trying to bat long rather than unleash a flurry of shots. Shahriar Nafees did that instead, before he appeared unsettled by a confident lbw appeal against him.

In Edwards's fourth over, Nafees was caught on the crease by a delivery that straightened slightly but the umpire turned down the lbw appeal. In the fifth, having fended off a delivery that bounced awkwardly, Nafees tried to pull an accurate bouncer from Edwards. The ball slammed between his helmet's grille and peak, pushing the visor on to his nose and cutting it. Nafees went off the field, his injury coming soon after that lbw shout.

Tamim began to rebuild the innings and found an ally in Raqibul Hasan. They added 52, 29 of those in singles, and were in control of the situation. Tamim had reached his third half-century in four innings at this venue when a wild slog against offspinner Marlon Samuels resulted in a top edge that was caught by Kraigg Brathwaite at midwicket. Whether the distraction of reaching a half-century had played on Tamim's mind is debatable, but again a position of control was lost through a poor shot.

Tamim, however, did not regret playing the shot. "I don't have any regrets about the shot I got out to. I have scored plenty of runs with this shot. It is one of my favourite shots," he said. "I don't have an answer for this [why I got out after being set]. I try to stay in the middle as long possible and score runs. I have to work this out. I think I'm not at my best but I was satisfied with the way I batted today."

Raqibul did not buck the trend of giving it away. As tea approached, Raqibul had moved to 41 and Darren Sammy was toiling without success. Then there was a confident appeal for lbw, which was turned down by umpire Kumar Dharmasena, and on cue Raqibul found himself stuck on the crease against an in-ducker that hit the pad. Bangladesh were 159 for 3.

Shakib Al Hasan then batted serenely with Mushfiqur Rahim and they scored the runs promised by Tamim's sound start. Just when the passage to stumps seemed smooth, though, Shakib began to get frustrated by Samuels' line. A string of dot balls culminated in Shakib trying to cut a ball that was too close to him and edging to the wicketkeeper. Mushfiqur remained firm at the other end, though, mixing a defensive game with a few strokes that ensured a final burst by Edwards and the rest was thwarted.

"I think it is a good achievement that we batted one whole day," Tamim said. "It is difficult to say how much we'll score since this isn't a fast-scoring wicket. Batsmen have to work hard on it. I think 320-350 will be a very good score.

"Normally when I drive a ball away from the body, it comes to the bat easily but it wasn't coming here. Hitting the ball was difficult unless it was pitched up or a really bad delivery."

Mohammad Isam is senior sports reporter at the Daily Star in Dhaka

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Dummy4 on October 23, 2011, 0:54 GMT

    Whatever the match referee did to Bangladesh yesterday, remains me of Multan test. Poor Bangladesh most of the time they don't play good and whenever they play good cricket the umpires decides to go against them and play as 12Th men for opposing team.

  • Rezwan on October 22, 2011, 5:41 GMT

    Whoever made this comment Bangladesh could have been better, you should understand which two words suit you the best at the moment. This has been the best performance of Bangladesh in test cricket. Finally the batsmen realizes how to set themselves in and yes there run would have ticked more if Shariar Nafees continued. They didn't take much risk to get hold of the wickets and they did perfectly.

  • TMoney on October 22, 2011, 4:29 GMT

    Bangladesh batted with maturity. Last test match the tried to get the runs quickly but this test match they played calmly and patiently and they were rewarded. Bd respected oppositions bowling, looked for the singles and punished the bad balls. That is how test cricket is played and BD was able to show that which was very pleasing. Kayes is on the verge of losing his position if his dismal test performance continues.

  • Dummy4 on October 22, 2011, 3:35 GMT

    The way Tamim out it was not necessary in that time we are upset.he had a chance to make three figure.

  • Andrew on October 21, 2011, 22:50 GMT

    I don't care that this was a battle between the cellar dwellars of test cricket, this was TEST cricket. Even including tests where the Bangas have won, this was arguably their best test match batting day ever. Don't want to bag Kayes, he is a very sound ODI batsmen, but he showed why he is NOT a test batsmen, his dismissal was poor. Tamim was superb unti l he self destructed. Shakib looked good also self detonated, Raqibal looked real good, Rahim almost perfect. Nafees looked so good until he got nutted! All in all - the Bangas showed real determination not to lose clumps of wickets. The mini & major batting collapses have been the MAJOR obstacle confronting Banga cricket over their short history. Eliminate this, & they will at least be able to compete against all opposition. The job is not even half done. With the depth in the batting line up, I think 370 is the minimum (allowing for the pitch to be harder to score on). Bangas spinners should make life tough for the WIndies.

  • Shariful Haque on October 21, 2011, 21:34 GMT

    Good job Bangladesh cricket team... To be a much strong batting order I think Mohammad Ashraful should be in Bangladesh Test squads indeed...till now he is the best Test player for Bangladesh... And Junaid Siddique would be a better choice as a replace of Imrul Kayes specially in Test match at this moment... Even Bangladesh Team needs fast bowler mashrafe murtaza in there squads ASAP. Of course, Bangladesh Team selector's should give them much more time to play together and grow up as a strong side... I wish it will bring good feedback for BANGLADESH CRICKET. ;BTW, I hope some one of BCB members will read this messages and they will think twice about this...;

  • Dummy4 on October 21, 2011, 19:10 GMT

    Reasonable performance by Bangladesh. I felt Tamim and Shakib could have capitalized on their starts, but oh well ... Nevertheless, the great thing was that Tamin showed the temperament, unlike his innings in England that were great but pure panache. Shakib looked set for a big one. B'desh should hope that Mushfiqur will go ahead and score a big hundred. Anyway, he's doing superbly with the bat, especially after cataincy. Good luck to him and the team.

  • shahadat on October 21, 2011, 18:57 GMT

    bangladesh always start nicely but cant avoid 2nd innings collapse. if they can do this time--they will win this match. west indies team and Bangladesh team dont have much difference in their strength. so hoping for a win

  • Safin on October 21, 2011, 18:18 GMT

    Bangladesh have to score 450+. I hope Shahriar Nafees will be okay tomorrow and will bat again

  • Dummy4 on October 21, 2011, 18:02 GMT

    Why not 400+ batting till tea break. If the pair in middle survive first hour, we can expect that mark with a Mushi 100. Our spinners in 4th innings will be decisive about a win for the host. Wish Shahriar can bat again if needed.

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