India reached 206 for two at tea on the first day of the one-off Test against Bangladesh, who had their backs to the wall on their maiden visit to India, at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium in Uppal on Thursday. (HIGHLIGHTS | SCORECARD)
Cheteshwar Pujara and Murali Vijay set India a platform from where skipper Virat Kohli took off in pursuit of a total big enough to shut Bangladesh out in the one-off Test at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium at Uppal here on Thursday.
The fifth century partnership between Vijay and Pujara this season, trumping Vijay Hazare-Russi Modi’s four in six innings ages back, followed by Kohli’s 111 not out saw India finish strong with 355 for three on Day One of the Test.
At stumps Kohli, who got his 16th century, was with Ajinkya Rahana (45) who is making a comeback from injury. The two have added 122 runs.
The only time Bangladesh looked to be in the game was during the first 10 overs when the ball did a bit on the fresh surface. The visitors got the wicket of KL Rahul off the fourth ball of the match when he played on, but from thereon, barring a few chances that were squandered or where luck favoured India, it was a grind.
The Indian batting duo put on 178 before Mehedi Hasan Miraz, who had wasted a chance to run out Vijay early, got rid of Pujara, getting him caught behind.
India earlier won the toss and got what they wanted. A perfect opportunity to bat first, pile up a total, and put pressure on their opponents, who are touring this country for the first time for a Test.
The spinners, generally the backbone of the Bangladesh attack, wouldn’t have got much help anyway on the first day and they struggled to keep the Indians in check once they got going.
Vijay opened up after he got the hang of Kamrul Hasan Rabbi in the 12th over with two boundaries, bringing up his fifty off 82 balls. Pujara was content to play second fiddle but looked solid as the day progressed and reached his fifty off 108 balls.
He went past Chandu Borde’s record of most first-class runs in a season. Borde had made 1604.
Pujara’s class was evident in the way he played the spinners. He played strokes all around and exploited Bangladesh’s weakest link in bowling attack, Rabbi.
After Pujara’s dismissal, the onus was on Vijay to carry on with Kohli, but he fell to a poor shot, trying to sweep one that was too full. By the time he got out, he had got to his ninth Test century. Kohli and Rahane then saw off the day, their 122-run partnership coming in just over 26 overs.