The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
Email This Page
Pathan, Zaheer finish last rites
- India wrap up match in 5.2 overs on Day IV as Bangladesh suffer 19th innings defeat in 33 Tests

Dhaka: India completed the last rites, thrashing hosts Bangladesh by an innings and 140 runs in a one-sided contest to take an unassailable 1-0 lead in the two-Test series here on Monday.

It was a commanding performance by the Indians who notched up a huge first innings total of 526, built around a career-best unbeaten 248 by batting maestro Sachin Tendulkar, and bundled out Bangladesh twice for less than 200 to romp home with almost two days to spare.

Resuming at 170 for eight and needing another 172 to make the visitors bat again, Bangladesh were dismissed for 202 in the sixth over of the morning session on the fourth day here at the Bangabandhu National Stadium. Only 5.2 overs were needed. This was Bangladesh's 30th defeat in 33 Tests.

The overnight pair of Manjural Islam and Tapash Baisya made a last ditch attempt as they struck six boundaries between them on Monday, extending their defiant stand to 69 runs.

But their effort proved too little, too late as left-arm seamer Irfan Pathan, declared Man-of-the-Match for picking up 11 wickets in the match, snared Baisya (29) with a short pitched delivery for a simple catch to Sachin Tendulkar at mid-wicket.

Two balls later, Islam (69) tried to hook Zaheer Khan but ended up with a faint edge to wicketkeeper Dinesh Karthik.

Bangladesh went deeper down the abyss. It was their 19th loss by a margin of innings and runs, and fourth such on the trot.

Incidentally, the two Bangladeshi innings by themselves would have made an interesting one-day contest, since they lasted just a little more than 110 overs put together on a flat track.

If anything, the wicket helped Pathan claim his first 10-wicket haul in a match as the 20-year old left arm pacer sliced through the Bangladesh top order.

The dampness in the wicket at the start of opening day's play did not help the cause of Habibul Bashar and his players. To the captain's bad luck, his counterpart Sourav Ganguly called the coin right for the first time in five matches this season.

The Indians then proceeded to make it a party of their own with Sachin Tendulkar and Anil Kumble scaling the summit of their respective careers.

Tendulkar's knock was not only his personal best but also was his 34th hundred, placing him on par with former captain and opener Sunil Gavaskar, in the list of most Test centuries.

The knock also gave him a rare feat of scoring centuries against all nine Test nations, achieved so far only by South Africa's Gary Kirsten and Steve Waugh of Australia.

It was not an entirely unblemished innings, but it was clear that Tendulkar was determined to get a big score under his belt after coming out of a three-month injury layoff.

His 371-minute stay at the crease showed he had significantly recovered from the tennis elbow that forced him to miss three one-day competitions including the Champions Trophy besides two Tests against Australia at home.

Kumble has nothing left to prove after claiming his 435th Test scalp and going past Kapil Dev to become India's leading wicket-taker.

Kapil Dev had held that record for 17 years since 1986-87 when he overtook Bishan Singh Bedi's tally of 266.

Zaheer Khan's whirlwind innings of 75, a world record for any number eleven batsman, and his Indian best partnership of 133 runs with the batting maestro, further rubbed salt into Bangladesh's wounds.

But the hosts did not enhance their reputation when they reprieved Sachin at least three times, when he was yet to cross his 50.

The only redeeming feature of Bangladesh's show was the performance of their seamers Tapash Baisya and Mashrafee Murtaza.

The right arm pacers, aged 22 and 21, respectively, gave some horrid time to the famed Indian batting line-up.

They were simply unplayable on the second morning when they bowled in helpful conditions.

Murtaza, coming back from an year-long injury lay off, was particularly impressive when he knocked Rahul Dravid's off stump.

It has been a surprising development for Bangladesh who began with a score of 400 in their first innings in the inaugural Test against the same opposition at the same venue.

Now, four years later, bowling seems to be their strong point.

Their batsmen, of course, have one more chance to prove themselves in the second Test beginning in Chittagong on Thursday.

Email This Page