‘The first hour is crucial’

Shakib Al Hasan of Bangladesh attempts to hit 4 during the 1st day of the 1st Test between Bangladesh and West Indies at Vivian Richards Cricket Stadium in North Sound, Antigua. Photo: AFP

Bangladesh are staring at the prospect of defeat inside three days after closing day two of the first Test on Friday at 50 for two in their second innings, needing 112 more runs to make the West Indies bat again.

West Indies were eventually dismissed in their first innings for 265 after tea, having started the morning at 95 for two.

Captain Kraigg Brathwaite anchored his side's effort with a typically painstaking 400-minute knock of 94, supported by 63 from Jermaine Blackwood, the vice-captain taking a page from his leader's operational manual as the contribution was the slowest of his 16 Test half-centuries.

"The first hour (of Day Three) is crucial. We have to keep it tight even if we don't get wickets. Once we build pressure, that's how we will take wickets. I don't think we can run them over. We have to bowl well," said Brathwaite.

"When I started the innings, the pitch was a bit slow. It got a little harder this morning but still it was on the slow side. But I think it was a decent pitch to bat on. I am obviously disappointed but I am happy that the team has an important lead. I was pleased (with the 94) but the most important thing was to build on a foundation for my team. I was happy with the time I spent. Obviously well done to the team for getting a lead," he added.

Brathwaite added 62 and 63 for the third and fourth wicket with Nkrumah Bonner and Blackwood respectively.

"The partnerships were really important. I think the Bangladesh bowlers did really well. Even the spinners held their line really well. The pitch was a little slow but it still had something for the pacers off the surface. I think those were crucial partnerships. I thought we did a good job to get a lead."