Mirpur: The fall of eight wickets during the 53.3 overs possible, particularly New Zealand’s three, had kept the contest on an even keel before the afternoon rain forced an early end for the second day in succession. Earlier it was Neil Wagner’s maiden five-wicket haul that handed the tourists the advantage.
Bangladesh’s 282 was nowhere near a decent first innings total in Mirpur, but New Zealand conceded some of that advantage, losing three wickets for 107 in 33.3 overs. At 1:44pm local time, the players walked off as the drizzle turned into an outright downpour.
Shakib Al Hasan did much of the damage, picking up all three wickets to fall. The home side had a poor morning session, losing their last five wickets for just 54 runs in 20.1 overs.
The captain Mushfiqur Rahim was drawn to an away-swinging delivery by Wagner and was caught at a second gully position. It was his first shot of intent, having remained subdued till the dismissal. Nasir Hossain followed three overs later when an excellent delivery from Ish Sodhi took the edge to Ross Taylor who took a simple catch at slip.
Bangladesh’s last recognised batting pair had contributed 18 and 19 respectively, but their target of around 400 evaporated quickly. Sohag Gazi, who scored a century in the first Test, struck a four and a six in his 21-ball 14, before he became Wagner’s fourth victim, also caught at gully. Rubel Hossain edged behind to give the Pretoria-born left-arm fast bowler his fifth wicket and when Sodhi bowled Abdur Razzak, New Zealand’s morning work was done.
But Bangladesh responded swiftly. In the 13th over of the visitors’ reply, Shakib, in his first over, had Hamish Rutherford poking at a ball that popped to short-leg where Mominul Haque juggled once before holding on to it. Rutherford hardly looked comfortable against spin, toeing and top-edging deliveries around fielders on occasions.
Shakib struck again off the second ball of his following over when he trapped Peter Fulton with a straighter delivery. The batsman thrust his pad out and with Shakib hardly getting the ball to turn, it was a very easy decision for the umpire.
After lunch, Taylor and Kane Williamson showed some resistance. The pair were severe on Abdur Razzak after lunch, scoring 7, 8, 5 and 13 in consecutive overs. Williamson, however, was stopped in his tracks, quite literally, by Razzak’s replacement at the Media Centre end. Rubel Hossain bowled a short one to the New Zealand No.3 who ducked too soon and was hit on the side of his face. He keeled over, and was taken off by the physio.
Brendon McCullum joined Taylor but New Zealand had lost their rhythm. He batted for half an hour before holing to deep square leg where Rubel took a tumbling catch. He hurt his back in the process as he fell awkwardly. He was back on the field the next over, and a short while later, rain struck.
There was nevertheless enough time for a brief look at Bangladesh’s latest Test debutant, Al-Amin Hossain. The tall seamer – a rarity even for Bangladeshi pace bowlers – opened the bowling, gave away 13 runs in his only spell of six overs, and was struck for two boundaries.
New Zealand 107 for 3 (Taylor 37*, Williamson 28*, Shakib 3-25) trail Bangladesh 282 (Tamim 95, Wagner 5-64) by 175 runs