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Afghanistan lose wickets but nudge lead towards 200

07 Sep 2019 CricBuzz

The one-off Test between Bangladesh and Afghanistan progressed at a quick pace as the visitors nudged their lead towards 200 by the lunch break on day three. Bangladesh, who lost wickets at regular intervals yesterday, were heavily dependent on the overnight pair of Mosaddek Hossain and Taijul Islam to cut down the deficit below 100. But it took just three balls for Afghanistan to finally break the partnership as Taijul tried to go for a big one and lost his stumps with Mohammad Nabi's slider doing the trick.

Three overs later, Rashid Khan finished the proceedings by trapping Nayeem Hasan plumb in front for his fifth wicket of the innings. On a track that's turning, a lead of 137 could well prove to the difference maker as Afghanistan themselves found out immediately when they came out to bat. Shakib Al Hasan opened the bowling and led from the front by striking twice in the very first over to rattle the visitors.

Ihsanullah Janat began proceedings with a boundary off the very first ball but he failed to get connection against a slider from the Bangladesh skipper to get trapped plumb in front. Off the very next ball, Bangladesh got the big fish as the first-innings centurion Rahmat Shah hit one back to the bowler to depart for a first-ball duck to leave the visitors stunned at 4/2.

Afghanistan, on expected lines, went into a shell post those two dismissals and had made 12 runs at the end of the tenth over before Hashmatullah Shahidi broke the shackles with a couple of boundaries off a Shakib over. Off the next over, it was Ibrahim Zadran's turn to hoist one straight over the Taijul's head after surviving a review previously.

Bangladesh quickly broke the threatening partnership as Nayeem bowled one that spun sharply to take Shahidi's outside edge that was caught at slip. Asghar Afghan, who missed a ton in the first innings by just eight runs, showed enough composure to bat out the remaining overs in the session alongside Zadran to guide the lead to 193 by the break. 100 more runs might very well guarantee a historic victory for the visitors with the track continuously deteriorating.

Brief scores: Afghanistan 342 & 56/3 (Ibrahim Zadran 24*; Shakib Al Hasan 2-20) lead Bangladesh 205 (Mominul Haque 52, Mosaddek Hossain 48*; Rashid Khan 5-55, Mohammad Nabi 3-56) by 193 runs


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