1st Test, Day 4: India edge closer to victory despite Zakir Hasan’s maiden century

Bangladeshs left-handed opener Zakir Hasan became the fourth batter from his country to score a century on Test debut but India edged closer to victory as they reduced hosts to 272/6 at stumps on day four of the first Test at Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium, here on Saturday.

For India, they now need to take out four wickets on day five while Bangladesh need 241 runs for a miraculous victory. It was a day where the visitors’ were made to work hard with the ball, starting from a wickless first session, before taking out three wickets each in the next two sessions.

The final session began with Ravichandran Ashwin beating Mushfiqur Rahim on the outside edge, followed by the right-hander stepping out to flick the off-spinner through mid-wicket for a boundary.

Zakir began by sweeping Ashwin past short fine leg, and then brought a lofted drive over mid-off against Kuldeep Yadav. He got his century on Test debut when he swept Ashwin past short fine and soaked in the applause and calling of his name from the sparse crowd.

But his beautifully compiled innings ended in the next over when in an attempt to defend off Ashwin. But the ball took the inside edge and ballooned off the pad towards first slip, where Virat Kohli dived forward to complete a good low catch.

Shakib Al Hasan made his intentions clear against left-arm spinner Axar Patel by smashing him for a four and a six over mid-wicket fence. Mushfiqur Rahim had an escape on 22 when Rishabh Pant dropped a one-handed diving catch off Umesh Yadav. But he fell for 23 in the next over, when Axar got one to straighten past outside edge and uproot off-stump.

Axar had another wicket in the same over, getting to beat Nurul Hasan and drew him out of the crease, with Pant completing a quick stumping, as Bangladesh began to stare down the barrel.

But Shakib and Mehidy Hasan Miraz continued to get the runs — the Bangladesh cut through off-side against Axar, while the all-rounder lofted and had an outer edge running for two boundaries off Kuldeep.

It was Shakib’s turn to be aggressive against Kuldeep — lofting him inside-out over extra cover for four, followed by a slog-sweep over mid-wicket for six. The duo would hang around for an unbeaten 34-run stand, till stumps arrived.

Brief Scores: India 404 in 133.5 overs and 258/2 declared in 61.4 overs (Shubman Gill 110; Khaled Ahmed 1/51) lead Bangladesh 150 in 55.5 overs and 272/6 in 102 overs (Zakir Hasan 100, Najmul Hossain Shanto 67, Axar Patel 3/50, Umesh Yadav 1/22) by 241 runs

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