Bangladesh paid the price for poor fielding by allowing Pakistan to claw their way back in the second Test as the visitors closed in on a first innings lead reaching 292-3 on the third day on Monday.
Taufiq Umar made the most of Bangladesh’s sloppy fielding to score his seventh Test century which took Pakistan out of danger and put them in a position from where they can now even think of a win in this Test.
With as many as seven wickets in hand, the visitors were hoping the make some quick runs on the fourth day before testing Bangladesh’s mettle in the second innings, which could easily be decisive.
But the Tigers had the chance to put Pakistan under some kind of pressure had they not spilled three catches and missed a stumping chance that came their way.
They could take only two chances against four wastes in the 69 overs bowled on the third day until bad light stopped play. Mushfiqur Rahim was the first man to give Taufiq a reprieve when he missed a stumping chance.
The wicketkeeper was appealing for a catch with Taufiq on 56 and did not notice that the batsman was way ahead of the crease. If it is called carelessness, the drop by Nazimuddin cannot be explained with anything.
It went straight to him at gully off the first ball after lunch, but Nazim somehow managed to grass it giving Taufiq his second reprieve on 66. The left-hander gleefully accepted the life and completed his second Test century against Bangladesh before Shahriar Nafees offered another generosity at short leg on 118.
Nafees finally took the catch off Nazmul Hossain with the second new ball taken but it did not come before Taufiq toppled Habibul Bashar to become most successful batsman in Bangladesh-Pakistan Test encounter.
His 130 off 256 balls helped him take his total against Bangladesh to 555, which is just one run better than Bashar’s. The former Bangladesh captain scored 554 runs at 50.36 in six Tests against Pakistan.
Younis Khan is not too far away from Taufiq as he followed up his unbeaten double century in the first Test to reach 48 not out at close on the third day. But he too was benefited by butter-fingered fielding as Shahadat Hossain also put him down off Nasir Hossain at mid-wicket on 15.
Azhar Ali is the only Pakistan player not to receive any help from the fielders as Mushfiq caught him off Sakib al Hasan on 52 for the home side’s first breakthrough on the day.
Pakistan lead the two-match series 1-0 after an innings and 184-run victory in the first Test.
-With New Age input