Nafees, Shakib take Bangladesh out of trouble

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Mar 5, 2010
DHAKA: Shahriar Nafees and Shakib Al Hasan hit unbeaten half-centuries to steady Bangladesh on the opening day of the second and final Test against Pakistan in Dhaka on Saturday.

Nafees was unbeaten on 66 and Shakib 63 not out as Bangladesh reached 153-4 in their first innings at tea after losing four wickets for 43 runs in the morning session.

The left-handed pair denied Pakistan any success in the afternoon, having so far added 110 for the unbroken fifth-wicket stand.

Nafees, who swept and pulled off-spinner Mohammad Hafeez for two fours in an over, reached his seventh Test half-century when he fluently drove Gul through the covers for a boundary.

Shakib also completed his fifty in style, hitting off-spinner Saeed Ajmal through the covers for four. He had so far hit 10 boundaries, including three in an over off paceman Aizaz Cheema, in his 10th Test half-century.

Bangladesh were in deep trouble following Cheema's three-wicket burst in the morning before being steadied by Nafees and Shakib.

Cheema dismissed opener Mohammed Nazimuddin and Mohammad Mahmudullah for no score, and Nasir Hossain for seven runs in a sharp eight-over opening spell after the tourists won the toss and elected to field.

Fast bowler Umar Gul was the other wicket-taker in the morning session, removing Tamim Iqbal for 14.

Cheema and Gul exploited the conditions well after a delayed start due to fog, reducing Bangladesh to 21-3 in the opening eight overs.

Nazimuddin, who scored 31 and 78 on his debut in the last Test in Chittagong, failed to open his account this time as he was trapped leg-before by Cheema in the second over of the day.

Tamim hit two successive fours off Gul before falling to the same bowler, caught hooking at fine-leg by Cheema, while Mahmudullah was bowled by a delivery that cut in sharply.

Pakistan retained the side that won the opening Test by an innings and 184 runs, while Bangladesh brought in pacemen Robiul Islam and Nazmul Hossain in place of Mohammad Ashraful and Rubel Hossain. (AFP)