Sri Lanka v Bangladesh, 1st Test, Galle, 3rd day March 9, 2017

Bangladesh avoid follow-on but Sri Lanka in control

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Stumps Bangladesh 312 (Mushfiqur 85, Mehedi 41, Perera 3-53, Herath 3-72) trail Sri Lanka 494 (Mendis 194, Mehedi 4-113) by 182 runs
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

Play 03:31
Isam: Shocking day for Bangladesh

Rain, and a 106-run seventh-wicket stand between Mushfiqur Rahim and Mehedi Hasan put the brakes on Sri Lanka's advance in Galle, but loose dismissals from the Bangladesh top order had already gifted the hosts an imposing position. When the rains came to wash out the third session of day three, the first innings had been completed, and Sri Lanka led by 182 runs. Nevertheless, they may have to move quickly if they are to turn their dominance into a win - more rain is forecast for Friday and Saturday.

Bangladesh had begun the day with a little over a quarter of Sri Lanka's score knocked off, for the loss of two wickets, but quickly did they unravel in the first session. Soumya Sarkar played the first poor stroke, swatting Suranga Lakmal heedlessly off his hips to pick out the fine leg fielder. Shakib Al Hasan batted positively for 18 deliveries, but got himself caught down the legside off the bowling of Lakshan Sandakan. Mahmudullah and Liton Das then both fell playing footless shots - Liton poking at Herath only to send slip a catch; Mahmudullah missing a straight ball from Lahiru Kumara, which had been angled in from wide of the crease.

Defying Sri Lanka, and fitting the innings with some semblance of a backbone, was Mushfiqur. He was largely passive through the first session, even as Sandakan sent down a feast of loose deliveries in between several unplayable ones. He scored only 21 runs in 70 balls as the four morning wickets fell, but became livelier after lunch. Herath was launched into the sightscreen in the first over of the session, and Mushfiqur rarely let a scoring opportunity slip by him over the next few overs: he'd score 47 runs in as many balls, hitting eight boundaries while completing a 16th career fifty. He went on to make 85.

Mushfiqur Rahim battled through the day to help his side avoid the follow-on © AFP

Fresh from a good batting outing in Hyderabad, Mehedi fed off the senior man's productivity, and compiled 41 runs of his own - venturing five boundaries in all. The partnership not only helped stem a collapse, but also eliminated the option of the follow-on. Sandakan and Kumara - Sri Lanka's youthful wildcard bowlers - had helped rattle Bangladesh in the morning, but were perhaps guilty of the waywardness that allowed this stand to gain a foothold.

Once this partnership was broken, however, the end came swiftly, thanks in part to Dilruwan Perera, who was kept out of the attack for the first 40 overs, but made substantial impact when he did arrive. In his third over of the day, he nailed Mehedi in front of the stumps with a quicker ball that turned. Taskin was given not out when rapped on the pad next ball, but Herath reviewed that decision, and the ball was found to be taking out enough of leg stump to overturn that call. With No. 10 batsman Subashis Roy visibly uncomfortable at the crease, Mushfiqur attempted to farm the strike, but was perhaps caught in two minds when he came down the crease to Herath in the waning overs of the session. He could have hit Herath's slider down the ground, but instead had the ball dip on it and slip beneath his bat and into off stump.

A break for bad-light came just before tea was scheduled to be taken, but before the rains could come down, a brief break in the clouds allowed the teams to play the two further deliveries required to wipe out the Bangladesh innings - Herath having Mustafizur Rehman freakishly caught at short leg. Both he and Perera finished with three wickets from the innings.

The rain came just as the second innings was about to begin. An hour-long shower washed out the rest of the day.

Andrew Fidel Fernando is ESPNcricinfo's Sri Lanka correspondent. @andrewffernando

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Ammo666 on March 10, 2017, 10:08 GMT

    KANCHANA GUNASEKARA: First of all it was SL who was actually extremely lucky to win the toss & chose to bat immediately...stop big mouthing & talk to your limits, have respect for the opposition, don't be delusional, i don't see a single BD fan talking arrogantly as far as you type fans don't, you must be that school boy who can play better than SL full team LOL... you are talking like SL have won 10 world cups & won all the champions trophy & holding NO.1 rank in all formats, keep dreaming about 3:0

  • cricfan51302264 on March 10, 2017, 7:05 GMT

    Stage is set for Tharanga to stamp his authority. He is due for a big score . The drives he played confirmed the great form he is in. Just my two cents from India.

  •   Chaminda Wickremasuriya on March 10, 2017, 7:05 GMT

    BCG -Mustafizur is the best bowler ever! Why would you want to underrate him to Wasim and Asia?

  • Cricinfouser on March 10, 2017, 7:01 GMT

    Mushfiqur should bowl left arm spin , he is useless as a seam bowler

  • prasanrod on March 10, 2017, 6:54 GMT

    Who is this B.C.G who is giving judgement on Chaminda Vaas, telling SL can't face Muztafizur .... Look at the big picture -which is "Bangladesh is in trouble".

  • cricfan51302264 on March 10, 2017, 6:50 GMT

    Srilanka victory remains at mercy of rain gods . I would like to see Chandimal come into form . Just my two cents from India.

  • Ruwan123 on March 10, 2017, 6:44 GMT

    @ B.C.G. Your comment over fizzs' bowling indicates how desperate the BD fans are now. Come on guys respect the talent of the talented. Fizz is a good bowler. But not speed enough to bother batsmen at test level. He may have a good outing in ODIs. BD fans better talk to their hearts and answer frankly this ques. Would they be there in this level if not for SL support through regular tours and technical staff ? I have never seen any thanks from them. Just the typical Indian mindset. No difference.

  • SarathMendis on March 10, 2017, 6:40 GMT

    Supper slow Chandimal need to show he is in the team as a batman. I think SL should think to give Test captaincy to Hearth until he decide to retire. Mathew can be in short version game if he is physically fit.

  • Bangladeshi_Bangali on March 10, 2017, 6:32 GMT

    May be Mahmudullah and shuvashish should be dropped from test team. A couple of good batsman needed who can play very long innings in test.

  • Ratne on March 10, 2017, 6:32 GMT

    Both openers(UT & DK) played selfish cricket... With 180+ run in lead, rain around corner they should score quickly to set a target.. chances of winning is less for SL

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