Bangladesh fought back bravely in the face of Australian batting onslaught as the tourists ended up with 377 runs losing nine wickets at the end of the third day of second Test at Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium in Chittagong on Wednesday.
The Aussies took a first-innings lead of 72 runs with one wicket in hand on day three. They will try to extend their lead further today.
The day’s play was delayed due to rain in the port city. In the situation, the entire first session of the play had to be cancelled due to wet outfield.
As the match resumed, Aussie opener David Warner carried on with his sublime form and ended up playing an innings of 123 runs off 234 balls. It was the slowest ton of his career which went on to show the sheer determination of ‘the pocket size rocket’ to conquer the land of Tigers with his cool temperament.
Peter Handscomb (82) was sent back to the pavilion, courtesy of an excellent piece of fielding by Shakib Al Hasan. Handscomb’s decisive contribution to his partnership with Warner was halted by Shakib by sending him back to the pavilion with a run-out.
The Aussies could not dominate the day as Tigers’ bowling attack found the rhythm on time. Young recruits Mehedi Hasan Miraz and Mustafizur Rahman became lethal after a disheartening performance on the second day.
Miraz came into his own as the pitch started responding somewhat better than earlier days. The sharp turns and uneven bounce which Miraz extracted out of the pitch resulted in the peril of three Aussie batsmen as his figures stood at 3 for 93 at stumps of day three.
He dismissed Pat Cummins (4) in one of the most classical ways one could imagine. On the 109th over, Cummins decided to offer no shot which was hardly seen in cricket these days. Cummins misjudged a sharp spinner by Miraz and fell prey to an LBW appeal. Bangladesh appealed for an LBW was turned down, Tigers’ skipper Mushfiqur Rahim decided for a review and it was proven right.
Mustafizur Rahman was the pick of the bowler for Bangladesh. His consistent line and length kept destructive Australian middle-order in check. In addition to David Warner and Matthew Wade he nearly had Glenn Maxwell (38) in his kill list if not for the dropper catch at gully.
Birthday boy Mustafizur completed his spell with three wickets conceding 84 runs. Shakib and Taijul Islam bagged one wicket each for Team Bangladesh.
Bangladesh will have to fight it out on the fourth day of the match as the pitch has started showing signs of degradation. In this condition of pitch, the ball will spin much more sharply than before. Despite this, it will be an understatement to term the condition at Chittagong exhausting.
Bangladesh will look forward to getting rid of the Aussie tail as soon as possible and staying at the crease long enough to deny tourists the chance to triumph.