Shaheen Shah Afridi celebrates with teammates after taking the wicket of Bangladesh batsman Saif Hassan at Rawalpindi cricket stadium on Friday. AP
The return of Tests has proven to be a good omen for Pakistan as they started the first match against Bangladesh with a dominant bowling performance on day one at the Rawalpindi Cricket Stadium on Friday.
Hosts, under the leadership of Azhar Ali, opted to send in Bangladesh to bat in the first of the two-match Test series and the captain’s decision paid dividends as Pakistan’s young pace attack was on point from the word go.
Bangladesh were struck two early blows when opener Saif Hasan was caught behind by Pakistan wicketkeeper Muhammad Rizwan off a Shaheen Shah Afridi on the third ball of the very first over of the day.Pakistan counting on pace bowlers to dominate Bangladesh in first Test match
With nine wickets down, Bangladesh’s last man to be dismissed was from a run out, thus ended a day of dominance for Pakistan in both the field and with the ball.
Pakistan’s pacer made sure the hosts were smiling at the end of day one of the first Test against Bangladesh as they dismissed the whole team for 233.
Shaheen (4-54) and Mohammad Abbas (2-19) destroyed Bangladesh who were put in to bat by Pakistan skipper Azhar Ali on a greenish-yellow pitch at the Rawalpindi stadium.
Just before tea, part-time spinner Haris Sohail broke a defiant 54-run stand between Liton Das (33) and Mohammad Mithun (30 not out) to keep the home team's domination.
Sohail had dropped Mithun off a luckless Yasir Shah at wide second slip when the batsman was 22 but compensated the lapse with a wicket.
At the break Mithun was batting with Taijul Islam, who was on one.
The extended two-and-a-half hour first session due to Friday prayers truly belonged to Pakistan as they kept Bangladesh down to 95-3 by lunch.
Shaheen, 19, removed debutant Saif Hassan (nought) off the third ball of the match and then had skipper Mominul Haque (30) to get Pakistan vital breakthroughs.
Abbas trapped opener Tamim Iqbal with the tenth ball of the match for three to leave Bangladesh tottering at 3-2.
Iqbal, who last Sunday smashed Bangladesh's highest first-class score with 334 not out in a domestic match, tried to play across but missed the ball.
Umpire Nigel Llong of England had rejected the appeal but Pakistan wisely had it reviewed and the replay showed the ball hitting the stumps.
Haque and Najmul Hossain Shanto (top scorer with 44) revived the innings during their third wicket stand of 59 before Haque miscued a drive and was caught behind by wicketkeeper Mohammad Rizwan off Shaheen.
Haque smashed five crisp boundaries during his confident knock.
Shanto, whose previous best of 18 was against New Zealand in 2017, fell soon after lunch when he edged one from Abbas to Rizwan. He hit six boundaries.
Mahmudullah, who was shaping well with four boundaries in his 25, played a rash shot off Shaheen and was caught brilliantly at gulley by a leaping Asad Shafiq.
Bangladesh 1st innings
Tamim Iqbal lbw b Abbas 3
Saif Hassan c Shafiq b Shaheen 0
Najmul Hossain Shanto c Rizwan b Abbas 44
Mominul Haque c Rizwan b Shaheen 30
Mahmudullah c Shafiq b Shaheen 25
Mohammad Mithun c Rizwan b Naseem 63
Liton Das lbw b Sohail 33
Taijul Islam c Yasir b Sohail 24
Rubel Hossain b Shaheen 1
Abu Jayed run not 0
Ebadat Hossain not out 0
Extras: (b6, nb3, w1) 10
Total: (all out; 82.5 overs) 233
Fall of wickets: 1-3 (Saif), 2-3 (Iqbal), 3-62 (Haque), 4-95 (Shanto), 5-107 (Mahmudullah), 6-161 (Das), 7-214 (Islam), 8-229 (Rubel), 9-233 (Mithun)
Bowling: Shaheen 21.5-3-53-4 (2nb, 1w), Abbas 17-2-19-2, Naseem 16-0-61-1 (1nb), Yasir 22-2-83-0, Sohail 6-2-11-2
Pakistan: Shan Masood, Abid Ali, Azhar Ali, Babar Azam, Asad Shafiq, Haris Sohail, Mohammad Rizwan, Yasir Shah, Mohammad Abbas, Shaheen Shah Afridi
Bangladesh were bowled out for 168 in their second innings after resuming the day on 126-6 as Pakistan's pace and spin attack was too hot to handle despite a flat Rawalpindi pitch.
"The Test team is in good shape after winning the last Test against Sri Lanka,” head coach and chief selector Misbah-ul Haq said on Saturday. "Now we have different opponent, but still we haven’t made lot of changes.”
Bangladesh had secured a 44-run lead after bowling out Pakistan for 286, thanks largely to left-arm spinner Taijul Islam, who returned figures of 7-116.
The visitors chose to bat and reached 161-2 at tea on the first day, with skipper Azam batting on 60 alongside Azhar Ali, 36 not out, at the break. The duo put 91 runs in their unbroken third wicket stand after Bangladesh left-arm spinner Taijul Islam removed both the openers in the morning session.
A buoyant Bangladesh will seek a clean sweep against a confident UAE with a victory in the second match of the Skyexch T20 series on Tuesday. Both the team showed their mettle in the first match but an experienced Bangladesh won the game of nerve to emerge winners eventually.
Sheikh Ahmed Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Chairman of the UAE National Olympic Committee, on Monday met with UAE medal winners at the fifth Islamic Solidarity Games, held last month in Konya, Turkey.
The Board of Directors of the UAE Badminton Federation, headed by its President Noura Hassan Al Jasmi, announced the distribution of administrative positions to its board members during a meeting held at the federation headquarters in Dubai.