West Indies had a field day in Dhaka on Friday, 12 February, as they posted a fine 409 before restricting Bangladesh to 105/4 by stumps.
Joshua Da Silva was at the heart of it all, scoring 92, and putting on partnerships with Nkrumah Bonner and Alzarri Joseph to help West Indies achieve their first objective of posting a tall first-innings total.
The bowlers then took over, with Shannon Gabriel taking two wickets, as Bangladesh were reduced to 71/4 before Mushfiqur Rahim and Mohammad Mithun taking them past the 100-mark.
West Indies resumed on their overnight 223/5, with Bonner and Da Silva in the middle. They frustrated the Bangladesh bowlers in the first hour, adding 43 runs to their overnight partnership to extend it to 88. Da Silva was assured in his defence, even as Mehidy Hasan found his inside-edge a few times, while Bonner edged his way into the 90s.
Bonner was instrumental in West Indies’ monumental win in the first Test, and he looked good for a maiden Test century this time around. That is till Mehidy Hasan confounded him, placing a leg slip and turning one into him. Bonner fended it straight to the fielder, and Bangladesh had their first wicket of the day.
If the hosts hoped that wicket would turn the tide, it wasn’t to be. Joseph took the attack to the bowlers, putting the spinners off their lines, and tonking a few boundaries. The run-rate accelerated, and the duo put on a 118-run partnership to assert West Indies’ dominance.
Da Silva brought up his half-century, with a reverse-sweep for four, and the two carried on, with Joseph bringing up his own later during their association. The Bangladesh bowlers just couldn’t hit their straps, as the batsmen routinely found the fence, and seventh-wicket partnership took West Indies closer to 400.
The breakthrough came from Taijul, the left-arm spinner, who sent one in straight and full, and through the gap between Da Silva’s bat and pad. The wicket triggered a slide. Joseph followed suit shortly thereafter, having scored a 108-ball 82, and caught down leg off Abu Jayed.
Jomel Warrican and Shannon Gabriel scored in single digits but did enough to take the score past 400, and the innings break prompted early tea.
The final session didn’t go Bangladesh’s way. They lost two wickets within the first three overs, with Soumya Sarkar, who replaced the injured Shakib Al Hasan, dismissed for nought, and Najmul Hossain Shanto managing just 4 before falling in Gabriel’s second over.
Tamim Iqbal and Mominul Haque then revived the innings, putting on 58 for the third wicket, but two more quick wickets hindered the hosts significantly. It was Rahkeem Cornwall who broke through, firing one in wide and prompting Mominul into a rash drive. Tamim wouldn’t have been too happy with his dismissal either, attempting a flick and sending it straight to short mid-wicket.
At 71/4, Bangladesh were in real danger of imploding, with two new men in the middle, but Rahim and Mithun put on a solid 34* to arrest the slide and take the total past the 100-run mark. They have plenty more to do on the third morning.
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