HYDERABAD: Ravichandran Ashwin got the prized scalp of dangerous Shakib Al Hasan before Bangladesh reached 246 for 6 at tea on the third day of the one-off Test against India here today.
Bangladesh did better in the post-lunch session as they added 121 runs for the loss of two wickets. But India, after getting Shakib and Shabbir Rahman in quick succession, were in complete control.
Shakib, who was instrumental in stemming the first session rot, went on the counter smashing his way to 82 off only 103 balls before his indiscretion landed the visitors in trouble.
Once Shakib was dismissed, the visitors quickly lost another wicket with Shabbir (16) being trapped leg before by Ravindra Jadeja (1/45 in 17 overs)
Well set and looking good for a century, Shakib could not properly connect a lofted shot after giving Ashwin (1/39 in 12 overs) the charge, with Umesh Yadav gleefully accepting the easiest of catches at mid-on.
Shakib's balance was all awry as he did not reach to the pitch of the delivery and above all the situation did not warrant that shot with 107 runs already being added by him and other senior pro Mushfiqur Rahim (47 batting, 119 balls).
Bangladesh dressing room would have felt good about the session as both the senior players looked comfortable hitting some good shots but Shakib's dismissal robbed them of claiming a session which could rightfully have been theirs.
Shakib's shot selection has been a talking point despite his immense abilities as an all-rounder. Some of the imperious cover drives off Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Yadav were a treat for the eyes. He also attacked Jadeja, slogging the bowler to the cow corner.
He got an able ally in Mushfiqur, who kept the scorecard busy with his ramp shot off Ishant and the dabs off both Jadeja and Ashwin with an occasional cut shot. Earlier, Yadav (2/61 in 15 overs) rattled Bangladesh batsmen with pace while Ishant Sharma got some reverse swing going his way as the visitors were left losing three wickets in the pre-lunch session.
Bangladesh need another 242 runs to avoid follow-on which is highly unlikely. India had scored a mammoth 687 for 6 in their first innings. The first session of the third day certainly belonged to Umesh, who worked up good pace for a consistent period of time.
The only batsman who had looked comfortable was Tamim Iqbal (25) and he was unfortunately run-out after a horrible mix-up with Mominul Haque (12). The 'yes, no' miscommunication while going for the second run became Tamim's undoing as he could add only a run to his overnight score.
Mahmudullah Riyadh (28) and Mominul both were distinctly uncomfortable as Virat Kohli always employed the pace-spin attack from both ends. After Umesh bowled a three overs from the pavilion end (Shivlal Yadav End), Kohli cleverly switched him to the far end (VVS Laxman) end from which he bowled another six overs at a stretch. He continuously troubled both Mominul and Mahmudullah for a considerable period of time with his outswingers.
After bowling a number of outswingers, he got one to comeback sharply into Mahmudullah, which trapped him in-front. India went for a DRS but it was an 'Umpires' Call' despite the delivery grazing the leg stump.
But Umesh did not lose heart and left-hander Mominul got a fuller delivery that came in after pitching. The umpire promptly adjudged leg before and the batsman did not even take a review.
It was a testimony to Umesh's stamina that his pace never dropped during the nine overs that he bowled in the morning. Mahmudullah and Shakib Al Hasan (29 batting) then added 45 runs during which they played a few drives and also got their share of streaky boundaries in between.
But right-hander Mahmudullah was never in control during his stay. When Umesh was bowling, it was Jadeja bowling from the 'pavilion end' and often the ODI specialist will rush to meet the quicker deliveries from Jadeja.
Once Kohli decided to rest Umesh and Jadeja, he introduced Ishant and Ashwin from either ends. With the 'SG Test' now being 30-plus overs old and the team has maintained the shine, it was time for the lanky Ishant to get it to reverse and hit that length close to the full which makes life difficult for the batsman.
Mahmudullah, who looked like a walking wicket got one that darted in sharply with hint of reverse as Mahmudullah was beaten. The umpire adjudged the batsman leg before and he went for a review which did not work in his favour.
India, however, lost their second DRS when Ashwin had got one to straighten enough beating Shakib's bat but it was ruled not out.