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October 19, 2008
New Zealand offspinner Jeetan Patel has said his team still has a chance of winning despite Bangladesh scoring 184 for 8 in their second innings and extending their overall lead to 258.
"I think it [the match] is poised pretty well," Patel, who took two wickets in Bangladesh's second innings, said. "We bowled really well today and brought ourselves back into the match. We have got two wickets to get tomorrow morning and hopefully we'll get them early and then knock off the runs in the afternoon and on the fifth day."
New Zealand have chased a target above 250 only twice, and their best in away Tests is only 164; however, Patel felt it wouldn't play on their minds during the chase. "I think we're in a strong position as well and Bangladesh are not that far ahead. If you look at stats you can say it goes each way," he said. "The guys know the game plan really well. We've worked a few things out and are looking forward to the challenge tomorrow."
New Zealand's batsmen struggled against the turn and bounce in their first innings, a shortcoming that has frustrated captain Daniel Vettori. "Well, the guys needed to work out their game plans and I think they have. They had a day and a half to do it," Patel said. "We've seen some good batting from the Bangladeshis as well and also the fact that the belief is still there. We've got a lot of time to win the game and that's in our hand."
Patel had made use of the helpful conditions, taking four wickets and offering support to Vettori, who took nine in the match. "It was always going to turn," he said. "We always expected to come over here and play on spinning wickets."
Patel bowled 19 overs in the day, but 12 out of the 52 runs he conceded came in the final over, when Shakib Al Hasan, who made 71, hit him for three fours on the trot, ample proof the wicket wasn't as bad as the batsmen had made out to be. "There's plenty of runs out there," he said. "A lot of the guys are saying that it's going up and down but I don't think the wicket's that bad. There's still a little bit of turn there. There's a little bit of variable bounce but otherwise I think we'll be in a good position tomorrow to knock this off."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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