India have boosted their chances of appearing at next year's ICC World Test Championship final with a comprehensive 188-run victory over a gritty Bangladesh in Chattogram on Sunday.
Despite a strong rear-guard action from Bangladesh veteran Shakib Al Hasan (84), the hosts' last four wickets all fell prior to lunch on the final day as India drew first blood in the two-match Test series.
Spinners Axar Patel (4/77) and Kuldeep Yadav (3/73) did the majority of the damage as they shared seven Bangladesh wickets in the second innings between them and India climbed the World Test Championship standings as a result.
Axar Patel wraps up Bangladesh as India seal an emphatic win in Chattogram.#BANvIND | #WTC23 | 📝 https://t.co/ym1utFHW3S pic.twitter.com/B4utY6wPy6— ICC (@ICC) December 18, 2022
India receive a valuable 12 points courtesy of the triumph and now hold a 55.77 win-percentage as they close in a top-two finish at the end of the current World Test Championship period.
The victory sees India jump in front of Sri Lanka and up to third on the current standings, with pacesetters Australia and second-placed South Africa the only teams in front of them.
The good news for India is that those two teams are currently battling it out in a three-match series of their own in Australia, meaning India may be able to make further inroads during their remainder of their series in Bangladesh.
The second and final Test of the series commences in Mirpur on Thursday and another win there could even see India close in on the leading two teams.
India host Australia for four Test matches during February and March next year and need to finish in the top two places on the standings to make it back-to-back appearances in the World Test Championship final.
Rohit Sharma's side were defeated by New Zealand in the inaugural World Test Championship final at Lord’s last year and will be keen to make amends for that loss if they can reach the 2023 decider.