CHITTAGONG – A superb maiden Test century from Mominul Haque helped Bangladesh reach stumps on 380 for 7 on day three in Chittagong today – 89 runs adrift of New Zealand.
Starting the day on 103 for 2, and looking to overhaul the visitors’ 469, Mominul showed a sense of urgency in passing his hundred from just 98 balls before lunch on day three.
The left-hander was eventually dismissed just short of a double hundred on 181 but his stunning performance, coupled with useful contributions from Mushfiqur Rahim (67) and Nasir Hossain (46), saw Bangladesh inch towards parity.
Having single-handedly staged Bangladesh’s recovery from 8 for 2 on Thursday with an unbeaten 77, Mominul quickly picked up where he left off with a series of boundaries taking him to his first Test ton.
It was a flawless show of batting from the 22-year-old left-hander and Marshall Ayub could only look on in wonder as his partner took centre stage.
Ayub’s role was much less belligerent and he had reached 25 from 107 balls when he gave Corey Anderson a first Test wicket, hitting a thick edge to wicketkeeper B.J. Watling.
Although Mominul continued to hold his own, the home side suffered another blow in the first over after lunch with Shakib Al Hasan (19) also edging to Watling after attempting to cut a Kane Williamson delivery.
But Mominul could not be shifted and reached the 150 mark off 198 balls, including 28 boundaries, with the help of Mushfiqur.
The pair enjoyed a century fifth-wicket stand while Mushfiqur notched his fifty early in the final session, a fine display which boasted seven boundaries and two maximums.
But with a double century within sight, Mominul’s innings was finally brought to an end by an lbw decision at the hands of Anderson.
New Zealand then removed fellow dangerman Mushfiqur just five balls later thanks to Ross Taylor’s brilliant catch at slip off Doug Bracewell.
Any fears Bangladesh would capitulate were quickly eased by Hossain’s valiant turn at number seven, with the 21-year-old all-rounder a cause of much frustration for the bowlers before eventually coming unstuck against Ish Sodhi.
Sohag Gazhi (28 not out) also put up some late resistance and will pick up the innings again on day four alongside Abdur Razzak (one not out). (Sky)
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