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Bangladesh v England, 2nd Test – 5 Talking Points

Bangladesh
Bangladesh celebrates taking the final wicket of Steven Finn to win the second Test match. (Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images)

The 2nd Test between Bangladesh and England was equally poised at the end of day 2 as Bangladesh finished at 152/3 having a lead of 128 runs. The first session of day 3 was going to be very crucial and the game could go either way. Going by the pace at which cricket has been going by in the series, day 3 was expected to determine the direction of the result.

Bangladesh began well with the overnight batsmen Imrul Kayes and Shakib Al Hasan added 48 runs for the 4th wicket. The onus was on the batsmen to extend the lead and they were in a great position to do that. But English bowlers brought the team back in the match and picked up the last 6 wickets for just 96 runs. Adil Rashid was the pick of the bowlers with 4 wickets.

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Chasing 273 runs for victory, England openers provided the ideal start with Ben Duckett going after the bowling from the beginning. Till the Tea break, the openers had added 100 runs in just 23 overs and were cruising towards the target. But Mehedi Hasan halted the progress and sent 6 batsmen back to the pavilion one after the other. He was ably supported by Shakib Al Hasan from the other end who got 4 wickets.

The last 10 wickets of the England innings fell for just 64 runs as the technique of the batsmen against the spinners was heavily exposed. Bangladesh won the match by 108 runs and got their 8th victory in their Test cricket history. This win is by far the most significant for the nation as 5 out of 7 earlier wins came against Zimbabwe and the other 2 were against West Indies and this was the first time that they managed to beat a strong Test side.

Here are the 5 major talking points amidst the gripping day of Test cricket:

England’s fightback led by Rashid

Bangladeshi batsmen threatened to take the game away from the Englishmen at the start of day’s play when Kayes and Shakib constructed a nice partnership. But Kayes was sent back on 78 as the 5th wicket courtesy Moeen Ali. Then a collapse was triggered as the two strong batsmen Shakib and Mushfiqur Rahim departed in quick succession. Shuvagata Hom battled with the tail for a while and scored 25 runs to remain unbeaten. Adil Rashid and Ben Stokes ran through the batsmen at the other end and finished with 4 and 3 wickets respectively and the target for England was reduced to 273 for victory.

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Ben Duckett’s onslaught

The left-hander made his intentions clear from the start and took on the attack to the opposition. Bangladesh went with an all spin attack from the first over and he was on the offense straight away. He implemented the reverse sweeps pretty well and struck some wonderful boundaries and reached his fifty off just 61 balls. Till the Tea break, he had put the team in a strong position at 100 without loss but lost his wicket off the first ball after Tea. At the end, he scored 56 runs off 64 balls with 7 boundaries and a six.

Cook’s gritty innings

Being unflustered from the big hitting by Duckett at the other end, Alastair Cook went about his business in his usual manner. He defended the spinners beautifully and looked all at ease for most parts of the innings. He did not try to match Duckett shot for shot and waited only for the loose balls to strike the boundaries. He trusted his defense as he always does and notched up yet another half-century in Test cricket. He scored 59 runs off 117 balls before holding out to Mehedi Hasan and became the 5th wicket to fall in the England innings.

Also read – India v New Zealand, 5th ODI – Statistical Highlights

Mehedi Hasan’s purple patch continued

The young off-spinner Mehedi Hasan was on a roll once more as he bagged his 3rd fifer in 4 innings of the series. He bowled the first over of the innings and the English openers played him carefully. But Duckett was in the mood for big strokes and Hasan also received a bit of hammering. Just after Tea, the 19-year-old accounted for Duckett’s wicket and immediately the batsmen were on the back foot. He went on to bag the wickets of Gary Ballance, Moeen Ali, Alastair Cook and Jonny Bairstow all in a hurry and came back to grab the last wicket of the innings in the form of Steven Finn. He ended the day with figures of 77/6 in 21.3 overs and took his tally to a total of 19 wickets in the series.

Dharmasena’s decisions got overturned again

The umpire Kumar Dharmasena has been under the hammer in the series as few of his decisions were overturned and the same happened on day 3. In the 26th over, he ruled Cook out LBW and the batsman sent the decision upstairs. The replays suggested that the ball was going on to miss the leg stump and the umpire had to change his decision. Then in the 42nd over, Ben Stokes was adjudged LBW by Dharmasena and on review, it was found that the batsman had gloved the ball onto the pad and the umpire was again seen waving his hands to signal not out. The umpire has received a lot of criticism over last few days for his decision making but it is very difficult for an umpire to adjudicate on turning tracks like these.

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