BCL 2012-13, 3rd round, 2nd day January 9, 2013

Mehrab-Ayub partnership breaks Bangladesh record

Mehrab Hossain jnr and Marshall Ayub, who have built an unbeaten stand of 472 for the fifth wicket, a Bangladesh record, have spent a lot of time together in the middle over the years

Marshall Ayub and Mehrab Hossain jnr are in the middle of the biggest partnership in Bangladesh's first-class cricket. The pair, playing for Central Zone, has so far added 472 runs for the fifth wicket against East Zone, beating the previous highest of 420 between Ayub and Mohammad Ashraful, which was scored more than six years ago.

The record stand has ensured a place in the final for Central, who just needed a point to qualify; they are now 528 for four, and it is likely that captain Mosharraf Hossain would allow them to get to personal milestones, as well as the collective one. The record for the highest fifth-wicket stand in first-class cricket currently is held by Ravindra Jadeja and Cheteshwar Pujara, who added 520 runs without being separated, for Saurashtra in the Ranji Trophy in 2008.

Ayub and Mehrab reached their highest first-class scores as well. Mehrab crossed his previous highest of 196, while Ayub scored his second double-century of the season. Ayub's previous best was a knock of 209, during which he had shared a substantial fourth-wicket stand of 311, also with Mehrab.

"We have been batting well as a pair for a long time, and whenever I have come to bat for any first-class team, it is normally Marshall [Ayub] who is at the crease at No. 4," Mehrab, who bats at No. 6 for both Dhaka Metropolis and Central Zone, told ESPNcricinfo. "Our initial target was to get the team to a safe score, and then from the second morning, I counterattacked so that they eased the fielding placements and we could stay in for a long period."

"There wasn't much help in the Bogra wicket for the bowlers, but I thought Nabil Samad and Tapash Baisya bowled well. We had to ride it out even this morning but once we were on top, we batted comfortably," he said.

Ayub was reminded of the 420-run stand with Ashraful, in which he had scored 145. "I think the difference between that stand in Chittagong and this one is that I got a life in that game in 2006 whereas here it was a clean knock. There was one chance at short midwicket but it was a tough one so I wouldn't count it.

"My first target today was to move from 95 not out to a century, and once I crossed the 150-mark, a double-hundred was on my mind, as it is going to be my second for the season. Tomorrow I would like to think of getting a triple-hundred, but in batting you cannot predict anything. One good ball and it will be all over," said Ayub.

The two, who have known each other since their Under-13 days in the Dhaka age-group competitions, have had several productive partnerships this season too. "Invariably we have added 40-50 runs quickly whenever we have batted together. We wanted to do the same yesterday after we lost four early wickets. But now it has become a great achievement," Mehrab said.

They will have the chance to improving on it, and maybe break more records.

Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo's Bangladesh correspondent

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Ken on January 12, 2013, 14:59 GMT

    hopefully mehrab, marshall and mominul will get good experience with the A team and possibly ODI's later in the year. they should play in the A team and ODI teams before being promoted to test team, they shouldnt be rushed into the test team. with nasir, shakib, mushy and riyad also in the middle order, things looking good....

  • Deccan on January 12, 2013, 8:54 GMT

    shows the sorry state bowling in the country. and the flat tracks which are like highways providng no help for medium pacers.

  • Shipu on January 10, 2013, 15:07 GMT

    Its good that despite Bangladesh for some stupid reason not playing enough test matches are still taking the long form game seriously. The jealous critics of Bangladesh are just scared and of course against growing Cubs who will soon turn to Tigers :D

  • Dummy4 on January 10, 2013, 14:36 GMT

    Ayub, Mehrab and such players should be sent to away tours more frequently. Even Anamul, Mominul should play for the A teams. It's too early to suggest that they will do well in Test. BCB isn't that poor now, so more tours can be arranged at our own cost.

  • KH. RAFIQUE on January 10, 2013, 10:36 GMT

    Good to see that our young talented players are really on the phase of improving every single day......Congrats to both Mehrab & Ayub for their outstanding achievement......Kindly keep playing on.....i would also like to request our team selectors that the time has come to go for 3 different teams for 3 formats of the game....That doesn't mean that we will play 33 different players in 3 formats but at least we can ensure that the most suitable player is in the right format of the game.....For example- Naeem, Mominul, Mehrab,Ayub, Enamul (jnr) etc. for the Test Team not for the ODIs.....on the other hand players like Ziaur, Shahriar, Imrul,Junaid etc should be considered for the ODIs & T20s not for Tests.....Rest of the current National players must be considered for all 3 formats of the game.....This way players will be always in the proper competition to be proved themselves..... Roar Tigers Roar>>>>>

  • Dummy4 on January 10, 2013, 9:44 GMT

    Both of them are passing extensive form in this season. They should be picked to our test team. Marshall Ayub can be perfect No.4 while Nayeem Islam should be No.3 for our test best XI. Mehrab jnr should be in best 15.

  • Dummy4 on January 10, 2013, 8:45 GMT

    Good to see our boys showing real test cricket temperament. This is going to give confidence to tigers in international arena.

  • Rezwan on January 10, 2013, 5:36 GMT

    you are well on track to get into the bangladesh test team.. and guys, lets not say BD here, its our country, i prefer to say it BANGLADESH... let everyone see, who's got the talent...

  • Dummy4 on January 10, 2013, 5:01 GMT

    Both Mehrab and Marshal should be included in BD Test team