Bangladesh and New Zealand Clash in Exciting 1st Test of 2023/24 Season

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Bangladesh 310 and 212 for 3 (Shanto 104*, Mushfiqur 43*, Patel 1-94) lead New Zealand 317 (Williamson 104, Philips 42, Taijul 4-109) by 205 runs

Najmul Hossain Shanto scored his fifth Test century in the Sylhet Test match, giving Bangladesh a significant lead over New Zealand at the end of day three. Bangladesh, with seven wickets remaining, lead by 205 runs and largely dominated the day’s play.

Shanto, along with Mushfiqur Rahim, added 96 runs for the unbroken fourth-wicket partnership. This was Shanto’s third Test hundred in the last four innings, following his twin centuries against Afghanistan in June. Shanto achieved the three-figure mark and Bangladesh got some relief after losing two early wickets in their second innings.

Initially, the day did not begin well for Bangladesh. New Zealand’s ninth-wicket pair, Kyle Jamieson and Tim Southee, put on 52 runs and managed to bat out the first hour. Southee and Jamieson, although defensive, managed to hit four boundaries against the Bangladeshi fielders with deep-set positions.

After playing 17 overs, Mominul Haque dismissed Jamieson for lbw for 23 runs. In the same over, Mominul bowled Southee with a full ball, having scored 35 off 62 balls.

The Bangladesh openers, Zakir Hasan and Mahmudul Hasan Joy, withstood the difficult first ten overs before lunch. However, soon after the break, Ajaz Patel got Zakir Hasan lbw. Joy, who was outside the crease, was inches short in trying to reach back, after having faced 46 balls to make eight runs.

Mominul and Shanto then added 90 runs for the third wicket, strengthening Bangladesh’s position. Mominul displayed a good range of shots, hitting four boundaries during his 68-ball stint.

Before the tea break, offspinner Glenn Philips put saliva on the ball, but the on-field umpires Ahsan Raza and Paul Reiffel did not notice the incident. As per ICC guidelines, once the incident is spotted on TV, Bangladesh will be rewarded five penalty runs.

In contrast to his strong shots, Mominul’s run-out was disappointing. As he drove the ball towards mid-on, Mominul ran hard and was left stranded as Shanto wasn’t backing up at the non-striker’s end. Tom Blundell completed the run-out with Mominul far from the crease.

Shanto and Mushfiqur Rahim took their time to rebuild and then settled into a slow rhythm. Shanto slowed down after reaching 40, while Mushfiqur also batted cautiously, hitting most of his runs square of the wicket on both sides during his 71-ball innings.

Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo’s Bangladesh correspondent. @isam84

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