View Full Version : Final day Media coverage of BD-AUS Test-1
April 13, 2006, 07:02 AM
Fox Sports: Ponting century powers Australia to win
FATULLAH, Bangladesh (AP) - Ricky Ponting struck an unbeaten century Thursday as Australia stumbled to a three-wicket victory over Bangladesh in the first test.
Top-ranked Australia had to sweat for the win after losing three wickets in the first session in search of the final runs required to avoid a major upset to Bangladesh, cricket's bottom-ranked test playing nation.
The visitors reached the victory target of 307 runs just after lunch on the fifth and final day, with Pointing playing a captain's knock to finish the match unbeaten on 118. He smashed 13 boundaries in his 253-ball innings.
Tailender Jason Gillespie brought up the win with a single to finish four not out.
"Yes, it was a sigh of relief," a smiling Pointing said after the match.
Australia resumed on the overnight score of 212-4, requiring 95 runs for the win, but was forced to endure a nerve wracking first session that saw the loss of Adam Gilchrist (12), Shane Warne (5) and Brett Lee (29).
Australia's hopes of avoiding embarrassment then rested with captain Ponting and the tailenders on a deteriorating Fatullah Osmani Stadium pitch.
Pointing, who survived a dropped catch when on 97, got vital support from in-form Lee, who helped steady the innings before being dismissed by paceman Mashrafee Bin Mortaza.
Gilchrist added just six to his overnight score before Rafique bowled him for 12, reducing Australia to 225-5.
Rafique's next scalp was Warne, who was dismissed lbw for five as Australia crumbled to 231 for six.
Bangladesh had a dream start to the match after it piled up a massive 427 runs in the first innings and then bowled star-studded Australia out for 269 to secure a hefty 158-run lead.
Australia's bowlers struck back to dismiss inexperienced Bangladesh out for a paltry 148 in the second innings to ensure the visitors an achievable victory target.
April 13, 2006, 07:05 AM
The Age: Australia pulls off great escape
April 13, 2006 - 5:30PM
Australian captain Ricky Ponting's unbeaten century guided the world No.1 side to one of its greatest escape acts today.
Chasing 307 for victory, the tourists reached the target with three wickets to spare with Jason Gillespie (4no) squeezing the winning runs to third man at the Fatullah Stadium in Dhaka.
Ponting (118no) made sure Australia completed one of its finest comebacks against the whipping boys of world cricket in a determined knock of more than six hours.
Australia had been all at sea late on day two of the match at 6-93 in reply to Bangladesh's 427 before it fought its way back into the contest.
Bangladesh spinner Mohammad Rafique (4-94) earlier sent shockwaves through the Australian camp by cheaply removing Adam Gilchrist (12) and Shane Warne (5) in the opening 35 minutes of play.
However Ponting and Brett Lee put on 46 runs to ease the pressure on the star-studded side.
The defining moment in the run chase came soon after Lee's departure when Ponting was dropped by Mushrafe Mortaza with 24 runs still needed for victory.
Just three runs short of his century, the captain top-edged a pull shot off Shahadat Hossain but fellow paceman Mortaza failed to grasp the ball in his diving effort at fine leg.
Salt was rubbed into the wound in the next over when Ponting pushed Mortaza through cover for four to bring up his 31st Test century.
Steve Waugh is the only Australian to have scored more Test centuries and there was more than a touch of Waugh's resilience in Ponting's knock.
He took just under six hours to bring up three figures on a deck playing plenty of tricks.
After resuming at 4-212, the run chase started nervously this morning and Rafique soon had the home crowd buzzing by knocking over Gilchrist's off stump.
The wily left-armer continued to probe away and six runs later had Warne ruled LBW by umpire Aleem Dar with Australia 76 runs short of victory.
The ball appeared to be sliding down the leg side and Warne was well forward, but Dar sent him packing.
Enter Lee, fresh from guiding Australia to a thrilling two-wicket victory in the third Test against South Africa last week.
He and Ponting steadily chipped away at the target before the new ball was taken in the 22nd over of the day.
Lee (29) exited 30 runs short of the victory total, feathering a catch to wicketkeeper Khaled Mashud off Mortaza's bowling.
But Mortaza went from hero to villain in the very next over when he dropped Ponting.
The second Test starts in Chittagong on Sunday.
April 13, 2006, 07:06 AM
ABC: Ponting sets up Dhaka win
Australia captain Ricky Ponting scored a brave unbeaten century to lead his side to a three-wicket win over Bangladesh on a tense final day in the Dhaka Test on Thursday.
Ponting finished on 118, nursing the tailenders on the final day to steer the world champions to a victory target of 307 and deny Bangladesh only their second win in 43 Tests.
Ponting received solid support from fast bowlers Brett Lee (29) and Jason Gillespie (7 not out) after wicket-keeper Adam Gilchrist, who scored a century in the first innings, and Shane Warne had fallen early to give Bangladesh a scent of victory.
Ponting held his nerve, batting for more than six hours, facing 253 balls and hitting 13 fours in his 31st Test century to save his side from an embarrassing defeat.
He was dropped on 97 at fine leg by Mashrafe Mortaza after top-edging a pull shot with 24 runs still needed.
"This was one of my better centuries as the team needed the runs desperately. We really had to work hard for our runs and full credit to the Bangladesh bowlers for their fine job in the match," Ponting said.
"They were really good in these conditions but I want to see how they fare in Australia."
Mohammad Rafique was Bangladesh's most successful bowler with figures of 4 for 98 including the wickets of Gilchrist (12) and Warne (5).
Bangladesh, who piled up 427 in their first innings before bowling Australia out for 269 to take charge of the match, lost their two previous Tests against Australia in 2003 by an innings.
They had won only one of their previous 42 Tests since 2000, that victory coming over a depleted Zimbabwe side.
The second and final Test starts in Chittagong on Sunday.
April 13, 2006, 10:53 AM
Extract from Cricinfo. Great read.
"...Habibul Bashar and his band of would-be giant-killers didn't scale Mount Improbable, but the view from base camp must have looked very promising. Bangladesh can take some positives from this match - Shahriar Nafees's hundred, Bashar's own hand with the bat, and Rafique's superior effort with ball. In both Australian innings Rafique was the key, taunting the mighty with his loop and turn and getting them to dance to his tune. Today, as Australia attempted their bid for another win, he put the lethal faster one to use, dismissing Gilchrist and Warne, he checked Lee numerous times and forced him to hustle onto the back foot.
Bangladesh also have problems to address - the fielding, the running between wickets, and an appalling second-innings record - but now they will believe that they can compete with the best in the business. Mohammad Ashraful played but a little role in this Test but can lay claim to having sown its seeds. For it was a balmy summer's afternoon last year at Sophia Gardens when he defied Australia and allowed all of Bangladesh to dream. With a little more of the brilliance they showed in bursts here, they wont have to dream anymore..."
April 13, 2006, 11:29 AM
This one is crazy!!..
From BBC: Australia scrape to Fatullah win
"Australia have saved their blushes and stumbled to a three-wicket victory over lowly Bangladesh in the first Test."
Out of the urge to insult the Aussies, this British website just hit BD below the belt!! Annoying!!
April 13, 2006, 01:16 PM
<headline>Punter and co left eating humble pie</headline>
<!--articleTools Top--> <date>April 14, 2006</date>
<!--articleDetails--> <woff>Bangladesh's brave fightback showed they're no longer cannon fodder, writes Andrew Stevenson.</woff>
<!--articleExtras-wrap--> <bod> </bod>RICKY Ponting had stared humiliation in the face for long enough to walk off the ground in Fatullah yesterday without a spring in his step or a fist pumped in the sign of victory.
With a captain's innings that took him yet another large step away from impetuous youth, Ponting saved Australia's bacon - and maybe the Test careers of some of the more cavalier souls in his side who were unable to cope with the challenge thrown their way by Bangladesh.
Having shot his mouth off in the past, laughingly dismissing at Bangladesh as inadequate rivals for the might of Australia, Ponting brushed the crumbs of humble pie from his shirt front between overs and stayed determinedly focused on his retrieval mission. Australia's most mortifying defeat had been averted.
In the end, it was probably a single spilled chance in Ponting's unbeaten 118 - an ungainly top-edged hook and an equally ungainly attempt at fine leg by fast bowler Mashrafe Mortaza just before lunch - that stood between the two sides. Had it stuck, the game would have been back on the edge of a sharp knife with Jason Gillespie and the Stuarts, Clark and MacGill, left to get the last 24 runs.
Beaten, Bangladesh still managed to look like winners. Or, if not quite like winners, Test cricket's 10th-ranked side - with a single victory to their name - had seen enough fear in the faces of their supposedly invincible adversary to know they had arrived as players and as a team.
They came out knowing they needed early wickets. Adam Gilchrist obliged with a backyard swish. Warne came and went and left-arm spinner Mohammad Rafique kept asking questions for which Australia had few answers.
Bangladesh played with lightness and confidence, while Australia ground their way relentlessly toward the 307 runs they needed for victory. Bangladesh had smiles on their faces and fire in their bellies. And why not: cowering at their feet sat the pride of Australia.
What was it they'd said? Ponting was blunt enough last year. Minnows, such as Zimbabwe and Bangladesh, should be off limits, playing among themselves, until they were ready to be served up for Test match competition.
To be fair, the Australian captain recanted and, to be fair a second time, he was not alone. Former Australian captain Richie Benaud called for Bangladesh's expulsion from Test ranks: "They are simply not good enough to be pitched against proper Test match countries."
Shane Warne, hit for 112 runs at a tick under six an over without a single wicket in the first innings, was as blunt. "My concern is that the brand of Test cricket is being devalued and that is bad for the sport," he wrote in the Sunday Times. "Easy runs and wickets are distorting the records."
If it wasn't the quality, it was the workload. We're playing too much, bleated Australia's champs, and we're way too busy to play a warm-up match. Left unsaid was "Why would we need to?".
Why indeed with Ponting, looking increasingly grizzled under his fifth-day growth, strong enough to carry a few mates home. Selectors' memories, notoriously selective, are inevitably kinder in the rosy hue of victory. Still, neither Damien Martyn (4 and 7) nor Michael Clarke (19 and 9) will sleep very well tonight.
But, while scapegoats mightn't be too hard to find, the first Test is a better time to laud a new arrival. They'd already done it - humbling Australia last June by five wickets. But that was a hit and giggle. In a Test match, class will come out. And it did. Bangladesh refused to be cowed and competed until the last delivery.
April 13, 2006, 04:36 PM
Had Mashrafee not missed the catch, Ponting would have had night mares by now.
April 13, 2006, 05:40 PM
Had Mashrafee not missed the catch, Ponting would have had night mares by now.
You can't blame him for that. that was a very hard chance. he had to run 15-20 meters and dive. that was a great effort. but if that ball was 1 more second in the air, then it would have been a different story. but great effort bay mashrafee
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