Ibrahim Zadran and former skipper Asghar Afghan hit half-centuries while Rashid Khan played a quick cameo after taking five-wicket in an innings to put Afghanistan in complete control over Bangladesh in the one-off Test in Chattogram on Saturday.
The visitors reached 237-8 in the second innings at stumps on the third day, closing in on setting a daunting target for Bangladesh after already taking a lead of 374 runs with two wickets still in hand.
The highest successful run chase at the Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium is 317 when New Zealand defeated Bangladesh by three wickets in 2008.
Debutant Zadran smashed highest 87 off 208 balls in the second innings while Afghan made 50 off 108 balls before Rashid added 24 off 22 balls to further frustrate Bangladesh.
Wicketkeeper-batsman Afsar Zazai remained unbeaten on 34 runs to extend Afghanistan’s lead.
Sakib al Hasan picked 3-53, including two wickets in the first over of the innings, to give Bangladesh the kind of start they were looking for in the second innings after Rashid’s 5-55 helped Afghanistan bowl out Bangladesh for 205 runs in the morning.
Sakib spoke about a magical spell from a bowler after second day’s play and backed his words by dismissing opener Ihsanullah Janat for four in the third ball of the innings before he handed first innings centurion Rahmat Shah a golden duck in the next ball.
Nayeem Hasan removed Hashmatullah Shahidi for 12 to reduce Afghanistan to 28-3 but Ibrahim and Asghar added 108-run for the fourth wicket to deny Bangladesh further momentum.
Taijul Islam broke the partnership by picking up the wicket of Asghar, who also made 92 runs in the first innings.
Nayeem brought an end to Ibrahim’s innings featuring six fours and four sixes after the 17-year old right-hander was dropped on zero and 62 at short positions by Mominul Haque and Shadman Islam earlier.
Taijul Islam then removed Nabi for eight to give Bangladesh a glimmer of hope but Rashid took the attack to Nayeem, hitting him for five boundaries in one over, to put Afghanistan back in control.
Rashid, who was bowled by Taijul, earlier took the final wicket of Bangladesh innings to complete his second five-wicket haul in Test after the home side added 11 runs to their overnight 194-8.
Rashid’s five-wicket haul following his 51 runs with bat took him to a select group of player with a fifty and take five wickets as Test skipper.
England’s Stanley Jackson, Pakistan’s Imran Khan and Bangladesh’s Sakib are the only other players to achieve the feat.
His achievement came shortly after Afghanistan began another promising day with a wicket in the first over as Nabi bowled Taijul without allowing him to add any run to his overnight 14.
Mosaddek Hossain was unbeaten on 48 as Rashid wrapped up Bangladesh’s innings in the fourth over of the day.
Source: New Age.