Bangladesh gained another share of an unwanted record on Thursday when six players were out for ducks in its paltry first innings of 103 on the first day of the first Test against the West Indies.
Of the seven instances in which there have been six ducks in a Test innings, Bangladesh now is responsible for three, including in the first innings of their previous Test against Sri Lanka last month.
Bangladesh owed almost half its first innings total to reluctant captain Shakib al Hasan who made 51. Veteran opener Tamim Iqbal made 29 and Litton Das made 12 as the only other players to reach double in a depleted batting lineup. The innings lasted only 32.5 overs.
The West Indies fast bowlers were outstanding on a brown first day pitch, which occasionally provided uneven bounce. Captain Kraigg Brathwaite called for the heavy roller between innings and the West Indies comfortably reached 95-2 by stumps.
The West Indies won the toss and were able to bowl, which usually is the favored decision at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium.
Jayden Seales took 3-33 from 10 overs and Alzarri Joseph returned the same figures from 8.5 for a career-best haul. Kemar Roach began the decline of the Bangladesh innings with two early wickets and finished with 2-21, while Kyle Mayers took 2-10 from five overs.
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“It was a pretty tough pitch to bowl on in terms of finding a length,” Roach said. “It was very slow at the beginning so obviously you want to be a bit fuller. There were some rough patches there and some ridges and such that we wanted to hit as much as we can.
“I think we did that pretty well. Shakib batted well for his 50 but overall the bowling group did a pretty good job today.”
Roach said the toss was “very important.”
“It’s always best to bowl here in Antigua with the movement, the lateral, sideways stuff. To bowl well and bowl them out after lunch is fantastic.”
Bangladesh always faced an uphill task Thursday, coming into the match after a home series loss to Sri Lanka. Captain Mominal Haque stepped down after that defeat and Bangladesh was without Taskin Ahmed and Shoriful Islam, who are injured, and Mushfiqur Rahim who is on the Hajj pilgrimage.
Shakib reluctantly took on the captaincy, though he has made clear he prefers shorter formats over Test cricket.
They were in trouble from the start, when they lost Mahmudul Hasan Joy for a duck to the second ball of the day, bowled by Roach, and Najmul Hossain Shanto, also without scoring, in Roach’s second over.
Mominul also fell for a duck when Bangladesh was 16 in the sixth over. Tamim and Litton Das provided some brief resistance before Tamim was out with the total 41-4, having batted for just over an hour.
Shakib reached his half century with little support from 64 balls with six fours and a six. He was out with the total 103, caught in the deep by Roach from Joseph’s bowling. The innings ended shortly after lunch.
Braithwaite and John Campbell put on 44 for the West Indies’ first wicket before Campbell was out for 24 and Raymon Reifer fell for 11 with the total 72-2. Braithwaite anchored the innings and allowed the West Indies to reach stumps within sight of a first innings lead.