Watch: In the first hour of the Sylhet Test match, Ajaz Patel turned a ball by the proverbial mile to bowl Zakir Hasan.
That the ball would turn at the Sylhet International Cricket Stadium was evident by the time Bangladesh and New Zealand announced their playing XIs.
Bangladesh went in with one fast bowler, Shoriful Islam. New Zealand captain Tim Southee had Kyle Jamieson for support, but the latter’s batting credentials might have influenced that.
Mahmudul Hasan Joy and Zakir Hasan opened batting after Najmul Hossain Shanto opted to bat. Southee introduced spin in the seventh over, replacing himself with Ajaz Patel.
Things looked ominous when, in his third over, Ajaz turned a ball from outside off that beat both Zakir and wicketkeeper Tom Blundell and went for four byes. In Ajaz’s next over, Joy put the first ball away for four before running a single, bringing Zakir back on strike.
To the left-handed Zakir, Ajaz now bowled at 90kph some distance outside the off-stump. It was short of a length, but perhaps not short enough for the ambitious cut Zakir had set himself up for.
By the time he realised his error, he had no chance: the ball zipped into Zakir (12) and hit leg-stump, and Bangladesh were 41-1.
Joy went on to top-score with 86, while Shanto and Mominul Haque made 37 apiece as Bangladesh finished the day on 310-9. Glenn Phillips (4-53) has picked up his first four wickets in the format, while Ajaz has 2-76 and Jamieson 2-52.
Interestingly, all nine of Bangladesh’s dismissed batters have reached double figures, as has No.11 Shoriful. If Taijul Islam adds two more to his overnight tally of eight, it will be the 16th instance of all eleven achieving this in the same Test innings.
Watch Ajaz Patel produce a peach to bowl Zakir Hasan:
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