Bangladesh bowlers build on success
British Universities 190 for 5 (Knappett 62*, Parker 45*) trail Bangladeshis 381 (Omar 167, Ashraful 102) by 191 runs
Bangladesh enjoyed another successful day of acclimatisation against British Universities at Fenner's. Javed Omar converted his overnight 111 into a career-best 167, Mohammad Ashraful reached a century of his own (after a brief consultation with the scorers), and by nipping out five top-order wickets for 82, all four of their frontline bowlers were given a chance to shine.
The only fly in Bangladesh's ointment was a dogged unbeaten sixth-wicket stand between Luke Parker (45 not out) and the wicketkeeper, Josh Knappett, who had rattled along to 62 not out from 76 balls by the close, as the Universities closed on 190 for 5. But their 108-run stand could not detract from another composed day's work from the Bangladeshis. Sterner tests await, but their relaxed arrival bodes well for the challenges to come.
Omar and Ashraful had resumed on their overnight 238 for 3, and Ashraful in particular, was in a hurry to reach three figures. He pulled the left-arm seam, Glen Read, for four and then went to three figures with a lofted drive down the ground, but when he was dismissed moments later, the scoreboard had him on 99. Ashraful, who had been counting his runs all morning, was convinced he had not fallen short, and after a brief consultation, the scorers agreed they had omitted a drive for three through mid-on.
Rajin Saleh was unable to get to grips with the conditions in his short stay, but Omar ground on and on, and had passed 150 for the first time in first-class cricket when he was dismissed soon after lunch for 167. Khaled Mashud, Mashrafe Mortaza and Mohammad Rafique ensured that the tail did not fold, and Habibul Bashar might have had a declaration in mind until Monty Panesar entered the attack to mop up the tail for a healthy 381.
With their confidence high, Bangladesh's seamers came out all guns blazing and the Universities were quickly in trouble at 62 for 4, as each of Mashrafee, Tapash Baisya and Shadahat Hossain picked up at least one wicket. Rafique, Bangladesh's left-arm spinner and leading wicket-taker, then opened his account for the tour with the scalp of David Brown, but Parker and Knappett ensured against a collapse.