The crowd at Mirpur usually doesn't make a lot of noise when England takes a wicket but the silence after Mahmudullah's reckless dismissal was more like a shock. It rang through the stadium, and most of those present would have probably wished for a more mundane end to such a theatrical day.
Exactly why Mahmudullah went for a slog sweep against Zafar Ansari off the last ball of the day is hard to know given how well the Bangladesh players are protected from having to give public explanations these days.
Shakib Al Hasan still hasn't said why he ran out of the crease on the third morning of the first Test, which was such a crucial point in Bangladesh's fortunes in Chittagong. Courtney Walsh, Chandika Hathurusingha and Mushfiqur Rahim gave their views on the shot in the interim. Mahmudullah spent 2013 and 2014, his most difficult period as an international cricketer, avoiding the media.
Mahmudullah's urgency at the end of the second day seemed wholly out of place. He was possibly trying to reach his fifty before stumps, however ridiculous it may sound. There cannot be too many reasons for an experienced batsman to play that shot.
Meanwhile, two old problems came back for Mushfiqur. He dropped two catches (Root on 19 and Ansari on 0), although Bangladesh recovered from both but it was his wary mindset as a captain that prevented Bangladesh from dominating England.
Wicketkeeping blemishes dogged him in the ODI series against Afghanistan but the captaincy issue has been there for a while now. In 2014 and 2015, there were moments when Bangladesh had oppositions on the mat but Mushfiqur wouldn't go for the tap-down.
With England staring at a 70-run first innings deficit, letting Adil Rashid continue to play lofted shots over cover or giving him room to take singles on the legside may have been a tactical ploy but when Mushfiqur removed the silly mid-off from under Woakes' nose midway through their partnership, he released the pressure too early on a batting line-up that, as Mushfiqur remarked before the game, bats deep. Reducing England to 144 for 8 is similar to reaching 171 for 1 while batting against them. On both occasions, Bangladesh squandered the chance to run away with the game.
While it is acceptable for a captain to wait for the second new ball by letting a few part-timers bowl, the manner in which Rashid and Woakes were allowed to walk through Bangladesh's first innings score was alarming. Throughout their 99-run ninth wicket stand, the England Nos. 9 and 10 took advantage of a suddenly insipid Bangladesh.
Mushfiqur's captaincy is part of the wider apathy that the tenth Test-playing nation suffers from, but thankfully Bangladesh now play with enough cricketers who have developed the ability to stamp down on any difficult situation. Imrul Kayes' unbeaten 59 went beyond giving him confidence for the critical third morning. It showed to the rest of the Bangladesh batting line-up that they could succeed applying their own technique even on an iffy pitch.
But like Imrul, they have to back themselves fully. He heartily swept for boundaries and was decisive when going for the block, even if it meant he had to adjust the bearing of the bat at the last minute. He was guilty of planting a Chris Woakes half-tracker down point's throat on the first day, so ensured that he took a firmer stride in his second chance. He was keen on the sweep, timing five of them for boundaries between fine-leg and in front of midwicket.
There was method in his approach, as he only went down for the sweep when he seemed absolutely sure. There were moments towards the end of the day when he looked to be too keen on the shot, but that was also when he started playing the reverse sweeps, one of which also went for four. There was risk involved but this is the new Imrul who has developed a more aggressive approach and it helped Bangladesh get out of a tricky situation rapidly.
Like Imrul, Taijul Islam has developed into a strong enough character for tough situations. He was Mehedi Hasan's perfect foil. In nearly every over from the start of the second day, he created doubt in the England batsmen's mind.
Seen casually, it wasn't much more than the typical left-arm spinner's fare that is sampled by visitors to Mirpur. But Taijul uses his high-arm action after the jump to good effect. He is also invariably quite accurate when not looking to stop runs. With the English batsmen taking short forward steps to meet his deliveries, his near-perfect spot created trouble. The pitch was helpful for sure, but still the spinners have to extract help out of it.
He removed Ben Stokes with one that popped on him but there was no build up to that dismissal as it was his first ball to the left-hander. Contrastingly, he had worked hard on Joe Root all morning, eventually trapping him leg-before with one that skidded after pitching. Taijul had been trying that delivery continuously but Root was sneaking past him by forcing the ball towards the leg-side. But that tactic didn't last long: Taijul, too, was building the pressure, which was useful for Mehedi who picked up wickets regularly to finish with 6 for 82.
Both Imrul and Taijul will have bigger roles to play on the third day. The expectation on Imrul will be to steer Bangladesh out of their collapsing zone in the first session. If he can do it successfully, the bowlers, including Taijul, will be delighted by a bigger cushion in the fourth innings.
Lucky for Taijul, these days he doesn't always have to wait for the bigger stars in the dressing room to provide such help. Even some less feted, such as Imrul, can deliver.