Dhaka Test: Bangladesh capitulate as Sri Lanka win series

Sri Lanka won the second Test by 10 wickets and clinched the series 1-0 thanks to disastrous performance by top-order batters on Thursday at Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium.

The first match of the series ended up in a draw in Chattogram.

With this win, Sri Lanka secured a crucial 12 points and passed Pakistan in the points table of the ICC World Test Championship. On the other hand, Bangladesh missed a great chance to achieve some points for the current cycle of the Test Championship.

Bangladesh were down to 24 for five in the first innings of this match. Mushfiqur Rahim and Liton Das rescued them from that collapse hitting a century each. In the second innings, they again lost four under 25 runs. And this time, none came up with the efforts like the Mushfiqur-Liton partnership, and subsequently Bangladesh suffered a big defeat with about two sessions to play on the final day.

The Mushfiqur-Liton duo was unbeaten at the end of day four. So the expectation was high from them. But Mushfiqur only could deliver 23 this time, and he was dismissed in the morning session.

The onus was on Shakib Al Hasan, Liton and Mosaddek Hossian to stretch the innings as much as possible. On the fifth wicket, Liton and Shakib added 103 runs and hinted at something bigger like the sixth-wicket stand of the first innings, but an outstanding bowl-and-catch effort from Asitha Fernando removed Liton for 52 when Bangladesh were stuttering at 156 for seven.

After Liton’s dismissal, Bangladesh were able to add only 13 runs. The hosts ended their second innings on 169— securing a tiny lead of 28 runs that Sri Lanka chased in just three overs without losing any wicket.

In both Bangladesh innings, the Sri Lankan pace-attack was tremendous. Kasun Rajitha took five wickets in the first innings— his best in the format so far. And in the second, Asitha Fernando took six wickets— his best in Tests as well.

“A disappointing performance, we have to work hard. But there were some positives, Mushfiqur and Liton batted really well,” the Bangladesh captain said to the broadcaster after the match. “They put us under pressure with the new ball, we will have to handle it better next time. It's all about the mental thing so we need to be mentally strong if we are to come back in the next series.”

Sri Lankan captain Dimuth Karunaratne gave credit to the pacers for this series win. However, he expressed disappointment for the spinners who struggled to find themselves in a comfortable position.

“The fast bowlers did the job for us, both in the first innings as well as the second. We do get good wickets for spinners in such conditions, they did well in patches, but I'm a bit disappointed at how they bowled. They'll have to do a lot better in the next series,” Karunaratne said after the match.

Despite the dismal show from the team, Shakib, the premium Bangladesh allrounder, took himself to a new height. It was the 10th time when he took a fifer and scored a fifty in the same Test. He is now only second to Ian Botham of England who did this on 11 occasions in his career.

The right-handed wicketkeeper-batter Litton also has something personal from this Test. He completed 2000 Test runs scoring 52. In the first innings, he scored 141.

Angelo Mathews and Dinesh Chandimal were imperious with the bat for the visitors. They hit a ton each in the first innings that helped Sri Lanka to secure a crucial lead of 141 runs. Mathews also had a ton in the first Test in Chattogram.

“Nothing is better than getting Test hundreds and winning matches. They made me work extremely hard for my runs though. It is difficult to compare, but two good wickets. Chattogram was flatter, here in Mirpur, there was some life for the bowlers early on, was up and down at times, credit must go to our bowlers. Feeling confident, when you get a start, you'd have to make it count and that is what I did,” Mathews told the broadcaster after the match. The right-handed batter won the player of the series award.

While winning this series will boost the confidence of Sri Lankan ahead of their next assignment against Australia, Bangladesh will have to fight hard to get the confidence back when they tour West Indies next month for a two-match Test, three-match ODI, and three-match T20I series.

Source: United News of Bangladesh