Shanto and Shadman centuries force Zimbabwe into a corner

Sunbd Desk || Published: 2021-07-10 14:05:23 || Updated: 2021-07-10 14:05:23

Najmul Hossain Shanto and Shadman Islam clattered centuries as Bangladesh declared on 284 for 1 in their second innings, leaving Zimbabwe to chase an improbable target of 477 in four and a half sessions in Harare.

The chase got off to a rocky start as fast bowler Taskin Ahmed had Milton Shumba caught at second slip, where Yasir Ali continued to have an excellent time. The as yet uncapped substitute fielder has taken six catches in the Test so far. Zimbabwe went to tea at 25 for 1.

Bangladesh have taken enormous control of this game and that in no small part is thanks to Shadman, who reached his maiden Test century, and Shanto, who got to his second century in the space of three matches.

Shanto broke the record for most sixes in a Test innings in Zimbabwe, hitting six of them during his 118-ball 117 while Shadman struck nine fours in his 115 off 196 balls

The pair added 196 runs for the second wicket, which became Bangladesh’s highest second-wicket stand against Zimbabwe, eclipsing Habibul Bashar and Javed Omar’s efforts in Chattogram in 2001.

Shanto was the more aggressive of the two, hitting Roy Kaia for five of his six sixes, all of them down the ground. His sixth, a pull off Shumba, prompted Mominul Haque’s declaration. Shadman was happy to anchor the innings but his strokeplay was quite attractive, with his pushes through cover and midwicket standing out.

Shadman and Shanto added 115 runs in the 18.4 overs in the post-lunch session, having added 124 runs at a more sedentary 3.87 per over. Shadman had added 88 runs for the first wicket with Saif Hassan, who mde 43 off 95 balls with six fours. He was unlucky to miss out on a big score with Dion Myers taking a sharp chance at gully, off Ngavara, to end his innings.

When Zimbabwe came out to bat in the second innings, Bangladesh greeted them with spin at both ends. It was the first time they had ever done so overseas and also the first time anyone has ever done so in ZImbabwe.

But it was Taskin who got the breakthrough leaving Takudzwanashe Kaitano, who hadn’t opened his account despite facing 26 balls, and Taylor, who was unbeaten on 10, to lead the fight for survival.

Source: ESPNcricinfo

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