Afghanistan in Bangladesh, Only Test, 2019
Venue: Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium, Chittagong
Date: 05 September-09 September, 2019
RR: 2.80 | Afghanistan beat Bangladesh by 224 runs
That ends the only Test! Afghanistan, to the surprise of many, have come out victorious. They become only the second team after Australia to get 2 wins in their first 3 Tests. What follows next is a tri-series between Bangladesh, Afghanistan and Zimbabwe. That starts on Friday, September 13, 2019 between Bangladesh and Zimbabwe at 6.30 pm local (1230 GMT). ADIOS! TAKE CARE!
VICTORIOUS AFGHAN SKIPPER, RASHID KHAN, HAS BEEN NAMED THE MAN OF THE MATCH. Rashid starts by thanking the Almighty for the win. Tells that he is happy with his team's performance and his captaincy. Adds they are new and admits it is not easy but he credits his players for showing the fight they did. Credits the young players in the squad and the support staff for this win. Singles the batters for their performance. Rashid feels the youngsters are coming in with a lot of confidence as the domestic circuit has got better and the 4-day games have helped them grow. Tells they had a good preparation for the game and credits the batsmen for applying themselves and fighting it out in the middle. Tells they are ready and excited for the upcoming T20 series. Ends by crediting Nabi. Thanks him for helping him and other players in the side and hopes to continue to play along with him in the shorter formats.
Bangladesh skipper, Shakib Al Hasan says that they lacked application while batting but also says Afghanistan bowled really well. Credits them for their win. Shakib admits after playing for 20 years they cannot say it is a build-up process. Feels they have not played Tests for a while and thinks that might have been a case why the players were not upto the mark. Tells Afghanistan kept building pressure on them and that is the reason they came out on top. Says he is looking forward to the upcoming T20 series as the T20 World Cup is just a year away.
A spinner's paradise it was called and it indeed turned out to be that way. Just 1 wicket fell to a pacer out of the total 40 and Rashid led the way from the front. Bangladesh tried their best but on Day 3, surprisingly, there was not much turn on offer. If they had managed to bowl out the Afghans early on that day, there might still have been an outside chance. But as is the case in most Asian Tests, toss wins you the game more or less. Please stay tuned for the presentation...
Afghanistan have produced a commanding performance. Winning the toss paved half the way for a win and they made use of that advantage. Getting close to 350 on a spinning track was always going to be difficult to challenge and Bangladesh never stood up. Rashid's 5-fer helped gain a lead close to 140 and that sealed the deal. In both the innings, the Afghans had one common factor. One batsman played a long innings and one hung around with the tail. Rahmat Shah and skipper Rashid did it in the first innings while Ibrahim Zadran and Afsar Zazai did the honours in the second.
Too many strokes being played? One would think so. Shakib Al Hasan started the rut on Day 5, playing a wild shot, edging one behind. That started a procession and eventually, the inevitable happened. Rashid got a 6-fer, finishing with 11 for the match. Bangladesh were under immense pressure and they wilted, not from Day 4, but from the first innings itself. Just one half centurion across both innings combined.
We were scheduled to start 30 minutes early. 98 overs slotted. That early start never happened. Lunch came and went. Then play began, only to be interrupted by rain. Tea came and went. And eventually, when the final possible chance came, it was indeed the last one. 19 overs were scheduled and with a little over 3 overs to spare, the visitors pulled one right out of the hat.
'Afghanistan won?' asks Aatma. The holy spirit. Relax. Just a colleague of ours. As shell-shocked as us. Who would have thought? From a position of getting the match called off due to rain, Afghanistan have pulled off a stunning win in the closing hours of play.
Zahir Khan is back into the attack.
Ali the Godman - 'Ahhh... something other than the Ashes is also interesting! My bet is on Bangladesh saving this Test match.'
Nayeem Hasan is the last man in. Minimum of 7.3 overs left in this game for him to survive.
Taijul Islam wants the review. But Bangladesh have no reviews left! Sarkar tells him that but Taijul is adamant. He has to walk back because there is no review left.
Taijul Islam is the new man in.
Qais Ahmad is into the attack.
Some halt in play here. The Afghanistan players are having a chat. Oh... there is an issue with the ball. The umpires are getting it changed.
Mehidy Hasan replaces his skipper out in the middle. 18.2 overs to survive. Mehidy can bat, he will have to partner Soumya Sarkar and give him nice support.
The Afghanistan players are out waiting for the covers to be off. The groundstaff is taking their own sweet time. The Afghanistan players are in a huddle before they take their respective position. Soumya Sarkar and Shakib Al Hasan are finally coming out to resume their innings. Zahir Khan to finish off his over.
... Day 5, Evening session ...
Good news! Rain has stopped and the match will resume at 1620 Local. 18.3 overs have to be bowled in the day. But looking at the time of the day, bad light might come into picture and doubt that all the overs will get completed.
Tea! Another session dominated by rain. We did manage to get little play. And it was very little as only 13 balls were bowled. Afghanistan would feel hard done by but will hope that after the break they can get some decent play time. Bangladesh, on the other hand, will be happy. They were staring down the barrel of defeat but looking at the weather they might be saved their blushes and might escape with a draw. Will we get play after the break? Let's hope so.
Update 1430 Local (0830 GMT) - Nothing much to update but worrying times for Afghanistan. The match is slowly making its way for a draw as it is still raining here.
Ahhh... not again. Please! The heavens have opened up once again and the covers are back on. The players are off the field and we are going to have an interruption. Again.
Oh uh! Looks like the rain is back.
Zahir Khan is on now. So no actual over for Nabi. He just finished his incomplete over from the previous day.
Rashid Khan to partner Nabi from the other end.
Finally the Afghanistan players are making their way out to the middle to resume play after a lengthy rain delay. Shakib Al Hasan and Soumya Sarkar also are out in the middle to resume their innings. Mohammad Nabi to continue his over with Sarkar taking strike. Revised session timings will be Tea at 1510 Local with Stumps to be called at 1730 Local. Minimum 63 overs to be bowled in the day. Remember this is the final day so all the overs will have to be bowled provided the weather and light are friendly.
... Day 5, Afternoon session ...
Good news!!! After a lengthy delay we are finally about to have some play. The Afghanistan fans will love this as we are about to start play at 1300 local (0700 GMT).
Lunch! Afghanistan will be nervous and Bangladesh will be very happy. Rain has continued to trouble us for the second day in a row. This session has been washed out without a ball being bowled. Afghanistan will desperately want the rain to stop and get on the field. The hosts will be happy with how the morning has been. Let's hope that we get play in the second session.
UPDATE 1130 local (0530 GMT) - Nothing much to report. The rain has turned into a drizzle which is a positive. We are hearing that the Bangladesh players who have not yet made their way into the ground should be there soon.
UPDATE 1040 Local (0440 GMT) - The news keeps getting worse for the visitors. The rain has gotten heavier. Bangladesh must be enjoying this weather.
Bad, bad news if you are an Afghanistan fan. The only thing they did not want is happening. It is raining. Bangladesh won't mind it but as a neutral it is always a terrible sight. Let us hope that the rain clears away. Stay tuned for further updates.
4 wickets for a historic Afghanistan win, 262 runs for a stunning Bangladesh win, 3 sessions for an enthralling draw. These are the possible scenarios on Day 5 of this enthralling one-off Test between the two subcontinent sides. Welcome to the coverage of the final day of this Test between Bangladesh and Afghanistan. The visitors have been all over Bangladesh in the preceding 4 days and are on the brink of a mammoth win against the hosts in their own backyard. Rashid Khan and co. have a full day's play if the weather permits and if they do not manage to win this then it will taste as bitter as a defeat. Bangladesh, on the other hand, will need to fight out of their skins to come out of this without a loss. They have their skipper, Shakib Al Hasan and Soumya Sarkar out in the middle. The last recognized batting pair and all hopes will be on this duo to put on a once in a lifetime partnership. If the weather forecast is to be believed then rain might just turn out to be a villain for the visitors and an unlikely hero for the hosts. Can Bangladesh pull off a heist or will Afghanistan get their first win over a Top 10 ranked Test side? Stay tuned to find out.
... Day 5, Morning Session ...
Right! So Day 5 does come. Will it be a day when Afghanistan create history by beating a Test side ranked higher than them? Or will rain save Bangladesh? Or... could we witness some serious digging effort from the home side to keep the tourists at bay? Don't think question 3 will have an answer in the affirmative. But then, this is cricket. Join us at 9.30 am local (0330 GMT), i.e., 30 minutes early, for all the action from Monday. ADIOS! TAKE CARE!
Afghanistan... well, well, well. You could be on the cusp of making history. But if this Test match were to end in a draw, questions will be asked as to why did the visitors bat on the morning of the fourth day, when an iffy weather was forecast well in advance. Rashid continues to be on a roll, with 3 scalps but for us, the pick of the bowlers was Zahir Khan. He was a bit short in his lengths but he managed to bamboozle the batsmen with his googlies and leg spin.
Another difficult day for the home side. They did pick up the remaining two wickets of Afghanistan pretty quickly but then the batting has not stepped up at all. Shadman Islam and Shakib Al Hasan were the only two players to show some grit. The others were sucked into playing for turn and deceived by those which did not spin. They just have one last batting pair left, in Shakib and Sarkar and realistically speaking, would be looking at some help from the heavens.
STUMPS ON DAY 4! This was coming. With the rain continuing to fall and the light fading, it was always going to be difficult to resume. So Bangladesh survive to see the final day.
Well, the heavens have opened up now. It had been drizzling for a while and started to get heavier. Eventually, the umpires have decided to take the players off. Don't think we will resume. It is pitch dark and Stumps are not far away either. Hoping for the best though. Stay tuned...
There is a bit of rain falling now...
Soumya Sarkar walks in at number 8, replacing Mahmudullah.
Change in the field. Man who was at mid-wicket, has gone onto the off side, towards point.
Mahmudullah walks in next, at number 7, replacing Shadman.
Rashid to continue...
We are back for the final session of the day! Shakib Al Hasan and Shadman Islam make their way out to the middle along with the Afghanistan's players. Mohammad Nabi will continue for the visitors with the ball. Shadman Islam will take strike.
... Day 4, Session 3 ...
The hosts started well with the bat but the fall of Liton Das after Lunch opened the floodgates a little. They were made to dance to the tune of Rashid and Zahir. Shadman has looked good and would hope to continue the good work after the break. Post the Tea break, the hosts would hope that they go into Stumps unscathed while the visitors would look for further wickets and maybe finish the game today itself. Join us in a while for the final session of Day 3.
25 overs, 72 runs and four wickets! The figures only tell you that it has been the visitors' session.They are just six wickets away from registering a massive victory here. Rashid was once again the pick of the bowlers as he foxed Mushfiqur Rahim and Mominul Haque breaking the back of the hosts' batting line-up. Zahir also bowled an excellent spell picking up two wickets for himself on his debut.
Mohammad Nabi to bowl again. 10-2-30-0 so far.
Shakib Al Hasan walks in next, at number 6, replacing Mominul.
Mominul Haque walks in at number 5, replacing Rahim.
Rahim has been adjudged LBW! He takes a long look at the umpire and then his partner, before taking it upstairs. Looks close. Hawk Eye shows all three reds. Gone!
Drinks! Good period of play for Afghanistan after the Lunch break, they have managed to pick up two quick wickets and are just eight wickets away from an amazing victory. For the hosts, Shadman has looked good while Mushfiqur has just come in and has looked to counterattacked. The hosts will hope that one of the remaining batsmen play some kind of a special innings.
Rashid Khan is back on!
Churi The Knife - 'Why are Bangladesh playing so much attacking cricket?' Alister the Godman - 'Perhaps they are going for the win'. Positive thoughts have no end.
Mushfiqur Rahim walks in now, at number 4, replacing Mosaddek.
Mosaddek Hossain walks in at number 3, replacing Das.
Liton Das has been adjudged caught behind! However, he has taken the review. No hesitation at all. And Ultra Edge shows why. No outside edge!
Zahir Khan will continue from the other end.
GOOD NEWS! Rains have stopped and the players are back out to the field to resume the second session. Shadman Islam and Liton Das make their way out to the middle. Islam will keep strike to Mohammad Nabi. 48 overs remaining in the day.
We should have started by now but unfortunately the heavens have opened up and the covers are on. We will have a delayed start to the second session. Hope it is a passing shower and play would resume soon.
... Day 4, Session 2 ...
Nothing much happened in this mini-session with the ball neither seaming around nor spinning much. Afghanistan have not bowled badly but one feels they would have to work hard to pick up 10 wickets. Technically, Bangladesh have got 5 sessions to try and score 398 or survive. Or shall we say, 368 now, as 30 runs have been taken off. But with the bad weather forecast, it will be intriguing to see how many overs do get bowled. Join us back at 1.40 pm local (0740 GMT) for the second session.
A good session for Bangladesh, to be honest. They are only looking to play out time and with Afghanistan playing out the few overs this morning, it has definitely helped the home side.
Rashid Khan comes into the attack. Can he repeat his heroics from his first innings? Got a 5-fer.
Mohammad Nabi to bowl from the other end.