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Recent Match Report – New Zealand vs Bangladesh 1st Test 2021/22


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Late wickets even out day one after a century stand between Conway and Will Young

New Zealand 258 for 5 (Conway 122, Young 52, Shoriful 2-53) vs Bangladesh

Devon Conway returned from injury and promptly struck his second century in Test cricket, on his home debut in the format. New Zealand, as a result, finished ahead of Bangladesh on the first day in Mount Maunganui, going to stumps 258 for 5 on New Year’s Day. The visitors however would still be happy with the way they did not let the hosts get further away from them, fighting back with late wickets after New Zealand had two decent partnerships in the first and second sessions.
Conway made 122 off 227 balls with 16 fours and a six over midwicket, which brought up his fifty after lunch. He favoured the on-side and remained strong square of the wicket, only hitting straight drives when fed something absolutely full. He steadied New Zealand after an early wicket with a 138-run second wicket stand with Will Young, who made 52. Conway added a further 50 with Ross Taylor, who looked to attack Bangladesh after tea.

The limelight however remained on Conway who was nearing his maiden Test hundred at home. He struck Ebadot Hossain through the covers to reach the nineties, before reaching the milestone with a single down to fine leg.

In the following over however, Shoriful Islam had Taylor – who will be retiring from Tests at the end of this series – caught at cover for 31. Conway looked well settled at the other end, but he too fell just before the second new ball was due. Part-timer Mominul Haque, bowling his floaty left-arm spin to fill in the overs, had Conway caught down the leg side for 122, sparking vigourous from his team-mates.

Ebadot also got a reward at the end of the day when he had Tom Blundell bowled off the inside edge, giving Bangladesh something to be pleased about as they trudged off the ground. Much of the day had belonged to the hosts, though.

Shoriful removed New Zealand’s stand-in captain Tom Latham in the fourth over of the morning – the left-arm quick got one to nip back into Latham, who inside edged the ball on to his pad and it lobbed behind where wicketkeeper Liton Das dived in front of the first slip to complete the catch. It was a big wicket given Latham was averaging 90-plus against Bangladesh before this game.

The early wicket meant that Young and Conway had to build from scratch almost. They left a lot of balls in the first hour, which allowed them to get the measure of the lengths they would want to attack. Bangladesh’s fast bowlers, particularly Taskin Ahmed and Shoriful, did bowl impressively in the first hour. But the pressure was off shortly after the first hour, when Conway and Young struck seven fours between them to given the home side some breathing space.

Both batters reached their respective fifties early in the second session, but Young escaped a chance when he was on 27. Shoriful got Young’s outside edge with a beautiful delivery in the first over after lunch, but neither the bowler nor wicketkeeper appealed.

Conway reached his fifty with a six off Mehidy Hasan Miraz, who he then smashed for two more fours later in the over. Young fell on 52, though, run out through a slight miscommunication with Conway. It was a waste of a wicket as Young, like Conway, seemed to have sized up the Bangladesh attack and looked on course for a big one. Conway went on to do the joy, batting steadily for much of the rest of the day to prop New Zealand up.

Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo’s Bangladesh correspondent. @isam84



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