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Oh Shakib! No Shakib!

  • Published at 10:22 pm October 22nd, 2016
Oh Shakib! No Shakib!
Perhaps the hero and also the villain for Bangladesh in the all-important third day of the ongoing first Test against England was Shakib al Hasan. The home side did all the hard work to finish the second day on 221/5 with all hopes and expectations lying on their most experienced player, who remained not out on 31 before the third day's play; Bangladesh trailing England's first innings tally by 72 runs. The Tigers were somewhat in the driving seat and just needed the maturity that was expected from a veteran player like Shakib in order to take the first-innings lead. But probably even Shakib had no idea what he was willing to do when he came down the track off spinner Moeen Ali in the very second ball of the third day as he totally misjudged the line of the delivery only to be stumped by Jonny Bairstow without adding a run to his overnight score. As it were, the scenario of the game changed drastically after his dismissal as very little was expected from the inexperienced lower order comprising debutants Mehedi Hasan Miraz and Sabbir Rahman. The Tigers went on to lose their last five wickets adding only 27 runs as England took the momentum away from the hosts with their 45-run lead. The mindset and planning of the home side were shattered and according to many, the irresponsible way in which Shakib got dismissed at such a crucial time of the Test match was totally unnecessary. However, it was the same player who brought Bangladesh right back into the game after England came out to bat in their second innings with the champion cricketer bagging his 15th five-wicket haul in Tests. [caption id="attachment_23866" align="alignnone" width="1024"] Bangladesh's Shakib al Hasan celebrates one of his five wickets DHAKA TRIBUNE[/caption] The left-arm spinner was venomous with the ball right from the word go as he trapped the dangerous Joe Root in front to start off proceedings. Shakib, who started the Test with 147 wickets, picked up two in the first innings and in the process accounted for his 150th scalp, thus becoming the 99th bowler to do so in the history. The home side were on top of the visitors, courtesy the culprit of the morning as Shakib dismissed debutant Ben Duckett for 15 when he gave a catch to short square-leg. Shakib then dismissed the highest scorer for the visitors in the first innings Moeen cheaply for 14 as Bangladesh started to sense a historic Test win with England reeling on 62/5 before the tea break. The visitors though came back strong after Ben Stokes and Bairstow added 127 runs for the sixth wicket but it was Shakib again who bagged his fourth wicket when he dismissed Stokes, who made a valuable 85. The Magura cricketer eventually went on to notch his fifth wicket of the innings, that of Adil Rashid, as England ended the third day with a lead of 273 runs with two wickets in hand. However, despite recording his 15th five-wicket haul, questions still remained at the end of the day regarding the manner of Shakib's dismissal. For if he had hung around a little more, things could well have proven to be different.
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