Bdesh delay England victory push

CHITTAGONG: Bangladesh were left with a stiff task to save the opening Test against England today, despite a fighting half-century from Junaid Siddique.

Left-handed Siddique made an unbeaten 68 as Bangladesh struggled to reach 191-5 in their second innings at stumps on the penultimate day, chasing an improbable 513-run target. Paceman Tim Bresnan (2-45) and off-spinner Graeme Swann (2-61) reduced Bangladesh to 110-5, but Siddique and Mushfiqur Rahim (47 not out) denied the tourists further success.

Siddique was involved in two defiant stands, adding 54 for the third wicket with Aftab Ahmed (26) and 81 for the unbroken sixth with Rahim. Bangladesh lost three wickets in the afternoon session in the space of 11 runs, including that of skipper Shakib Al Hasan.

Bresnan had Ahmed caught behind and then bowled Mohammad Mahmudullah (five) in a superb spell to put pressure on the hosts. Swann removed Shakib.

Tamim Iqbal, top-scorer in the first innings with 86, contributed only 14 this time before being bowled in Swann’s second over of the first session. Imrul Kayes (23) fell in the last over of the morning session, caught by Matt Prior off debutant paceman Steven Finn.

England batted for 50 minutes in the morning, adding 78 runs to their overnight total of 131-5 before declaring their

second innings closed at 209-7. Left-arm spinner Shakib bagged both the wickets, removing Prior (seven) and Swann (32) to finish with 4-62.

Swann hit three fours in his brisk 25-ball knock, while Ian Bell cracked one six and four boundaries in a 55-ball 39 not out. They put on 65 for the eighth wicket. Bangladesh were bowled out for 296 in their first innings in reply to England’s mammoth 599-6 declared.