Taufeeq Umar closed in on a second successive half-century to steady Pakistan on the second day of their second and final Test against Bangladesh in Dhaka yesterday.
The left-handed opener, who scored 61 in the opening Test in Chittagong, was unbeaten on 44 as Pakistan reached 87-1 in their first innings at stumps after bowling out Bangladesh for 338.
Azhar Ali was 26 not out when play was called off because of bad light.
Pakistan lost in-form Mohammad Hafeez before Umar and Azhar put on 64 runs for the unbroken second-wicket stand, with Umar hitting eight fours in his 79-ball knock so far.
Paceman Nazmul Hossain, returning to the Bangladesh Test side after seven years, struck with his first delivery when he had Hafeez caught behind for only 14, a stark contrast to the opener’s 143 in the last Test.
Bangladesh, resuming at 234-5, earlier lost well-set Shakib Al Hasan (144) and skipper Mushfiqur Rahim (40) off successive balls before being bowled out in the afternoon session.
The hosts were strongly placed at 305-5 before losing their final five wickets for 33, with Shakib’s dismissal starting the slide.
Shakib was run out following a mix-up with his skipper as Umar hit the stumps at the non-striker’s end from mid-wicket, while Rahim was caught down the leg-side by wicketkeeper Adnan Akmal off paceman Umar Gul.
Left-handed Shakib and Rahim batted comfortably against Pakistan’s pace-spin combination, adding 82 runs for the sixth wicket.
Fast bowlers Gul and Aizaz Cheema each took three wickets, while off-spinner Saeed Ajmal finished with 2-64.
Former captain Shakib, 108 overnight, cracked 15 fours in a superb 242-ball knock for his highest score in any form of international cricket, while Rahim hit one six and six fours in his 102-ball innings.
Shahadat Hossain, dropped on 5 by Abdur Rehman off Ajmal, remained unbeaten on 21 with the help of one six and two fours.