Bad light curtails play as India build lead
by Jinu Sabastian

Ground:Chittagong Divisional Stadium, Chittagong
Scorecard:Bangladesh v India
Player:Mushfiqur Rahim, Shahadat Hossain
Event:India in Bangladesh 2009/10

DateLine: 19th January 2010


The Indians for the first time got control of the Test though Bangladesh might still feel that they can still storm back into the match. The Indians medium pacers at one stage had the hosts on the mat when Bangladesh was reduced to 98 for 6 but Mushfiqur Rahim and Mahmudullah got into the act as they put on 108 to resurrect the innings of the host. The Indians could only manage to extract a slender 1 run lead. In reply India made 122 for the loss of one wicket with Gambhir (47, batting, 56 balls, 4x4) and nightwatchman Mishra (24 batting, 21 balls, 5x4) at the crease.


Earlier the Indian pacers continued to exert relentless pressure on the Bangladeshi batsmen as they removed three wickets in the morning session. Ashraful (2, 17 balls) was squared up by an unplayable leg-cutter from Ishant Sharma while Shakib (17, 20 balls, 4x4) failed to keep his slash down which was smartly picked up by Sehwag at gully. Sreesanth then got into the act when he got Raqibul (17, 39 balls, 2x4) to edge an outswinger as Bangladesh got reduced to 98 for 6.


It was then left to the last batting pair of Mushfiqur Rahim (44, 104, 6x4) and Mahmudullah (69, 108 balls, 11x4) to steer the innings to safety. The pair was cautious at the initial stage of the innings and as time passed the pair began to play sensibly. The bowlers barring Zaheer Khan soon lost their direction and their effectiveness as the batting pair prospered. The pair not only got the boundaries but also ran hard between the wickets to keep the score ticking. Indian leg-spinner Mishra was countered effectively while Sreesanth and Ishant bowled short and wide and to compound more problems for the Indians Sreesanth began to over step frequently.


The pair added 108 in 28.4 overs before an ambitious slog-sweep from Mushfiqur Rahim ended his innings. Mishra struck again at the stroke of tea when Shahadat Hossain (11, 14 balls, 1x4) chipped lamely to Yuvraj at point. After the tea break it seemed that Mahmudullah would take Bangladesh past the Indian first innings total when Sreesanth got the batsman to edge behind. Shafiul Islam (6, 8 balls, 1x6) launched Mishra over long-on for a massive six to take the hosts just one run short of the Indian total and then attempted another such shot but this time mistimed it to point.


Bangladesh folded up in their first innings with the score on 242 conceding a one run lead to the Indians.


India in reply got off to a brisk start as Sehwag (45, 58 balls, 4x4, 1x6) and Gambhir wasted no time in settling down. Gambhir got the ball rolling when he flicked a loose Shafiul Islam delivery through midwicket and he was joined in the act by a violent Sehwag. The openers did not let the opening bowlers to settle down and Shakib was forced to introduce himself into the attack in the eleventh over. He was successful in tying down Sehwag who finally gave in to his rush of blood. The stand-in Indian skipper was successful in launching Shakib over long-on for a massive six but the bowler hit back when he had Sehwag beaten twice in three balls. Sehwag tried to counterattack by trying to launch him over midwicket but this time mishit it to midwicket where Raqibul Hasan took a simple catch catch.


Keeping in mind the deteriorating light conditions the Indian team management send in Mishra next. Mishra showed that he is no slouch with the bat as he twice charged Mahmudullah and struck him once over long-on and once over mid-on for consecutive boundaries. The leg-spinner then carved Shakib through covers twice for boundaries before the umpires offered the light to the batsmen which they accepted immediately.


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