Bangladesh were handed a thumping innings and 130-run defeat by a strong India outfit in the first Test at Indore after the visitors were bowled out for 213 runs in their second innings.
The difference in experience and ability between the two sides was obvious and following the defeat, skipper Mominul Haque said that Bangladesh needed to play Test matches.
“I think we have to play a lot of Test matches. In the last seven months we played one or two Test matches. The bowling attack we played against was a bit challenging. I think if the openers could have survived for 15-20 overs then it would be easier for us. We have to take that challenge in the first 15-20 overs,” he opined after captaining the side for the first time.
“We didn’t bat well, although there were a few positives like Mushfiqur [Rahim] playing well in both innings and Liton [Das] playing well. [Mehedi Hasan] Miraz also did well for a while. We couldn’t play as a team and it wasn’t a good team performance,” he added.
The mind games started early on in the day when India declared at 493 for seven before the morning session started with a 343-run first-innings lead. The visitors, who may have been expecting India to bat for one more session, suffered an early batting collapse yet again in their second essay.
Imrul Kayes went for a drive off the front foot to an in-swinging delivery from Umesh Yadav without getting to the pitch of the ball and left a gap for the ball to squeeze through to find the inside edge before crashing onto his stumps.
In the next over, Ishant Sharma produced a gem of a delivery and castled young opener Shadman Islam. The length ball rooted the left-hander and the big in-swinger went through his defence.
Bangladesh were reeling once more from the pace attack and soon the first innings’ most technically correct batsman, Mominul Haque, was removed by Mohammad Shami. The skipper had survived the appeal for leg before at first, but the decision was reversed upon review by India. Mohammad Mithun followed him back to the pavilion soon after, following a rash shot off the same bowler.
Mushfiqur Rahim, who had been dropped thrice in the first innings, was handed a lifeline when Rohit Sharma dropped him in the slip when he was on four. He was prepared to fight it out after the chance but others lacked the same mentality.
Mahmudullah Riyad survived a few testing spells from the Indian pace trio to make it to lunch but he remained jittery post-lunch and played away from his body to a Shami delivery shaping away to get caught in the slip cordon.
At 76 for five, it appeared that the Tigers would roll over inside another session, but Liton Das and Mushfiqur stitched together a 63-run stand for the sixth wicket. Liton in particular looked in good touch but continued his trend of losing focus after getting starts and gifted his wicket to Ravichandran Ashwin, hitting the ball straight back to the bowler.
Then there was resilience from Mehedi Hasan Miraz, who partnered Mushfiqur during a 59-run stand for the seventh wicket, taking advantage of spinners operating for a period of time.
However, Yadav injected pace back into the attack and removed him with a length delivery that jagged back, hitting his forearm before ricocheting onto his stumps. A few overs later, Shami bagged his fourth of the innings, removing Taijul with a bouncer.
Mushfiqur Rahim had completed his fifty while running out of partners and chanced his arm against Ashwin but failed to middle the delivery and was caught at mid-off. Ebadot Hossain was the final wicket to fall as India completed a comprehensive victory.
After the resounding win, India’s bowling coach Bharat Arun praised his team’s voracious appetite.
“I think at present we’re the number one team in the world. Getting there is difficult, staying there is even more difficult. I think to do that over a period of three years, you need to stay constantly hungry.
“I think every victory gives you confidence. There are lots of questions posed by you people and all I have to say is that there are team goals which we play for. Maintaining the number one position is even more difficult than getting there. If everyone works towards team goals, individual goals take care of themselves. And that’s exactly the team culture that’s been set by the captain and the head coach, Ravi [Shastri]. Everyone works towards the team goal,” he said.