Bangladesh on the driving seat after strong resistance on day 3 of 1st Test, gets a lead of 73
In what turned out to be a couple of loose sessions, New Zealand scalped some crucial blows to put Bangladesh back in the Bay Oval Test. But a committed knock from Mominul Haque and Liton Das helped Bangladesh get past the Kiwis total at stumps, day 3.
A committed knock from Bangladesh skipper Mominul Haque alongside Liton Das helped Bangladesh move past the sublime total of New Zealand and handed them a decent lead of 73 runs after finishing day 3 of 1st Test at 401-6.
Replying to the sublime total of 328 in the first innings, four Bangladesh batters from the top-order scored half-centuries.
Mehidy Hasan was batting on 20 alongside Yasir Ali who was unbeaten on 11 at lunch after Bangladesh added 226 runs to their overnight score with the loss of four wickets.
Overnight standing batter Mahmudul Hasan (78) was the first one to fall after Bangladesh had resumed the play of day 3 on 175-2 at the Bay Oval against the recent World Test Champions. Neil Wagner got the better of him at gully to earn his third wicket of the match.
Mominul (88) got two lives early in his knock. First Kyle Jamieson dropped a caught and ball chance before Wagner bowled a no-ball after Mominul was caught behind.
Boult eventually caught Mominul in an lbw which he challenged but it turned out to be fine as the ball was clipping the stumps.
Liton lost him calm on 86 to fell short of his hundred, cutting off a Boult’s delivery wide outside the off-stump, and handed the ball to the wicketkeeper behind the stumps.
Tomorrow morning is very important
Meanwhile, Bangladesh team director Khaled Mahmud said that if his team can take the lead to 150 in the first innings against New Zealand, they can take the game up to the wire against Kiwis at Mount Maunganui.
“Tomorrow morning is very important. We have four wickets. There is Miraj and Yasir and we have a 73-runs lead. If we can get another 70 runs lead then it will be close to 150 runs lead and at that point, we will be in a good position,”Mahmud told reporters after the game.
“We want to survive and do well. Even if we cannot win, we want to draw in the Test match. Still, there are 180 overs left and it will be difficult to score runs if we can bowl well,”he added.
Mahmud showed confidence in his team and said that they have an excellent chance to defeat New Zealand in their backyard apart from their poor record in New Zealand which includes nine out of nine defeats with five innings defeat.
“I always speak with them [players] separately and try to inspire them. I just told them that we have lost a match despite declaring at 595 but we cannot always lose. One group must stand up, and why not this group,”said Mahmud.
“We need to follow the right process and more importantly play with courage and freedom. There is no ghost here. We had the confidence that we can do it but also had the fear considering this is a young team,”he said.
“Shadman, Joy, Shanto, Yasir, and Liton all of them are not very experienced but have the potential to do well here. They worked hard and it helped them,”he added.
Simultaneously, New Zealand pacer Trent Boult does not feel that it is a loss for the hosts and he says that if they can put a wise bowling attack during the first hour of day 4’s play, things will be different.
“They played very, very well. They were decisive. They made us come back and bowl spell after spell. It was Test cricket. The wicket is a pretty good one. The way we hung in there, didn’t let the game advance too much. It was nice to get a couple of wickets in the end,”said Boult.
“We have a big day tomorrow. Hopefully, we can push forward till the end. It looks like a Test match that will go down to the wire,”he said.
“We will see what happens in the first hour tomorrow, and go from there. Bangladesh would want to bat once and bat big. They would want to put pressure on us in the last couple of days. All three results are on the card,”he said.
“It is exciting to see the game so evenly poised. It is going to be a test for both sides,”he concluded.