Shakib, Mushfiqur fifties bring deficit under 30

Lunch Bangladesh 316 for 6 (Shakib 54*, Sandakan 3-102) trail Sri Lanka 338 (Chandimal 138, Mehedi 3-90) by 22 runs
Live scorecard and ball-by-ball details

Shakib Al Hasan steered Bangladesh past 300 after Mushfiqur Rahim’s dismissal © AFP

A shaky final half hour on the second day in Colombo was followed by a more stable continuation of Bangladesh’s innings on the third morning. The visitors were just 22 runs away from Sri Lanka’s 338, and they still had four wickets in hand. Much of the hard work was done during the 92-run sixth-wicket stand between Mushfiqur Rahim and Shakib Al Hasan. Shakib was unbeaten on 54 along with debutant Mosaddek Hossain who looked confident during his 15 off 24 balls.

Shakib started off with a cover-driven four before both him and Mushfiqur went into conservative mode. Much later, Mushfiqur collected two fours off Suranga Lakmal – driven through the covers and past midwicket – before hitting Lakshan Sandakan with a sweep and Herath through the covers.

Shakib was uncharacteristically quiet at the other end. However, he got a life on 40 in the 77th over when Dinesh Chandimal, at cover, threw wide to the wicketkeeper while Shakib scampered back to the crease after being sent back by Mushfiqur. This was his second reprieve in the innings after being dropped by Upul Tharanga on 11.

Mushfiqur, meanwhile, reached his 17th Test fifty before inside edging Lakmal on to his stumps soon after Sri Lanka had taken the second new ball. His dismissal ended a stand that did almost enough to salvage Bangladesh’s faltering middle-order which had collapsed.

Mushfiqur and Shakib did well to restore parity, and now it is up to Shakib, who reached his 22nd Test fifty, to ensure Bangladesh take the first-innings lead.

Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo’s Bangladesh correspondent. @isam84

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Source: ESPN Crickinfo

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