After the glamorous blitzkrieg known as the IPL, India have started their International games against a short series in Bangladesh. Osman Ali Stadium in Fatullah plays the venue for this game in Bangladesh. After a terrific show in the series against Pakistan, the Bangladesh team would have wanted to start he game in positive fashion.
With the weather forecast for the day looking grim, with chances of rain, the toss was very important. India got the early advantage after the spin of the coin as Kohli called correctly and opted to bat.
India went into the game with 5 specialist bowlers including 2 off spinners as expected. Bangladesh on the other hand had only 1 genuine fast bowler and had a lot of variety in the spin bowling department.
Dhawan and Vijay who already have a 200 run partnership to their name, started in the game in fine fashion taking advantage of anything that could be hit. Dhawan raced away 34 of 28 balls by the end of the 10th over and India were going at 5 runs an over.
Murali Vijay on the other side was happy to just see off the new ball and give the strike back to Dhawan who was looking in tremendous touch. He reached his half century even as India were only 64 in the 14th over. He raised his bat to the crowd and it showed in his face the determination he had in him to play a huge innings.
Vijay was still happy to rotate the strike and hit an odd boundary but was giving great company to Dhawan. The left hand & right hand combination meant that the two batsmen were complementing each other.
Then came a moment which Bangladesh will want to forget. Taijul Islam got one to turn and bounce and found the leading edge of Dhawans bat when he was on 73. Shuvagata Hom who was at a short midwicket position couldn’t grab onto it even after getting both his hands.
Dhawan survived but just a ball later, the inevitable shower started to come down heavily. The umpires called the play off and the entire square was covered within minutes.
After stop start showers and a host of inspections by the umpires, the covers were finally off after a delay of around 3 hours. This delay meant that the play would go on for an extra hour if the weather permits.
India resumed play at 108/0 and Dhawan started off after the break in the same way he left. He was not in a mood to let any bad ball away and was severe on the Bangladesh bowlers. He went sailing into the 90’s and on the other end, Vijay was edging closer to his half century.
Dhawan took his time to get past the three digit mark but Vijay on the other side finished his half century and was moving along quietly but confidently. Soon after, Dhawan reached his century in just 101 balls. At this point, the opening stand between these two was a record high for India against Bangladesh for the 1st wicket.
Dhawan showed no mercy as Rahim had to be defensive. This allowed them to play slowly and run between the wickets without any risks. India went past the 200 mark in less than 50 over’s and were going at a rate of more than 4 an over.
Bangladesh on the other hand tried 7 bowlers on the day without any luck. Shakib, their best bowler bowled only 8 over’s in the day.
Dhawan had enough time in the day to reach another land mark of 150 but Vijay was on 89 as the batsmen were offered light. At this point, the game had gone past the regulation timings by more than 30 minutes. Dhawan and Vijay took India to 235/0 at the end of the day in just 55.1 overs.
Both the openers laid a great foundation for India and the rate at which they have scored meant that the delay in rain has not left India lopsided in the game. They still have the upper hand and will want to play the same way tomorrow provided the game is not interrupted by any rain.
Bangladesh have a lot of work to do as they don’t seem to know from the where the first wicket would come. They have to come out positively and try to trouble the batsmen. If Bangladesh continue playing like this, India may well run away with the game even if rain plays spoil sport.