Siddique, Rahim delay England victory
CHITTAGONG: Bangladesh were left with a stiff task to save the opening Test against England at close of play Monday, 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 in the afternoon, but Siddique and Mushfiqur Rahim (47 not out) denied the tourists further success.
"The plan was to stay at the crease for as long as possible," said Siddique.
"It was a hot day... I knew if we survived a little while it could be a problem for them.
"But we have already lost five wickets and the target is also very big. We will try to occupy the crease (on Tuesday) and go session by session. If we can get a good partnership it will be a positive for us."
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. He reached his sixth Test half-century when he lofted Swann over mid-off for a four.
Bangladesh lost three wickets in the afternoon session in the space of 11 runs, including that of skipper Shakib Al Hasan to a dubious decision.
Bresnan had Ahmed caught behind and then bowled Mohammad Mahmudullah for five in a superb spell to put pressure on the hosts.
Swann removed Shakib, who was given out leg-before while attempting to sweep. TV replays, however, suggested the ball came off the gloves. The England spinner has so far taken seven wickets, including five in the first innings.
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 fell in the last over of the morning session, caught by wicket-keeper Matt Prior off debutant paceman Steven Finn after making 23 with four boundaries.
"At no stage did we sit back and say we were going to finish this game today. We wanted to bowl as many dot balls as possible and build pressure on Bangladesh," said Finn.
"They played very well. They didn't score many runs, but didn't play any loose shots. But we expected that, coming over here on their own turf, we were going to have to work hard to take wickets."
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.