Following their victory over Bangladesh in the final of the ODI tri-series, Sri Lanka would have been confident of carrying momentum and their form into the Test arena in Chittagong. But after Bangladesh won the toss and elected to bat, the away side were subjected to a long, trying day in the field, with Mominul Haque (175*) and Mushfiqur Rahim (92) putting on 236 runs together in 56 overs at the crease.
Bangladesh scored at an impressive 4.15 runs per over on a placid pitch, and although Sri Lanka struck twice with the new ball, the hosts finished day one sitting pretty on 374/4.
Mominul was the undoubted star, passing his fifth Test century and hitting 16 fours and one six to finish the day unbeaten on 175. He will need a further six runs on day two to pass his previous Test high score of 181, made against New Zealand in 2013.
The 26-year-old scored freely throughout his innings and combined well with the more circumspect Mushfiqur, whose 192-ball innings held the middle overs together, blunting Sri Lanka's seam attack, who struggled to find much movement.
Bangladesh were on top right from the flip of the coin, with openers Tamim Iqbal (52 from 53 balls) and Imrul Kayes (40) setting a brisk pace, which they maintained for the full 90 overs. Iqbal in particular took the attack to Sri Lanka from the off, smashing six fours and one six before Dilruwan Perera found a way through his defences. By the time his opening partner Kayes was trapped lbw by Lakshan Sandakan, Bangladesh were 120/2 from just 27.4 overs.
Thereon Mominul and Mushfiqur carved out a commanding position, plundering runs relatively easily throughout their dominant stand. By stumps, the hosts had scored their second-highest number of runs in a single day of Test cricket, falling just 10 runs short of their record of 388, set against New Zealand on day two in Wellington last year.
Mushfiqur eventually edged a wide delivery behind to Niroshan Dickwella off the bowling of Suranga Lakmal, who knocked over Liton Das' off-stump the next ball thanks to a misjudged leave. Mominul continued on, however, and in the process became the fastest Bangladesh player to reach 2000 Test runs.
He was joined by Mahmudullah – captaining in the absence of Shakib al Hasan – and the duo took the side to stumps in a commanding position. They will hope to continue where they left off tomorrow and build a daunting first-innings total.