Liton, Mominul's balancing act make Kiwis toil
Bangladesh's score edged past 300 with both Mominul Haque and Liton Das reaching fifties before tea on day three. Mominul was unbeaten on 61 off 175 deliveries while Liton Das kept the Kiwi pacers at bay with a cool 51 off 97 deliveries as Bangladesh reached 307 for 4 at tea, 21 short of New Zealand's first innings score.
Following a testing session before lunch, where Bangladesh lost two wickets and added 45 runs, Bangladesh found just the start they were looking for in the second session. Runs came in thick and fast with New Zealand bowlers erring in line and length after lunch.
Liton Das and Mominul Haque had very different approach to their innings but it had the combined effect of putting the Kiwis on the back foot after a good first session with the ball. If Liton produced a counter-attacking display, Mominul's watchful vigil provided the balancing act. Liton, came in after lunch not afraid to play his shots. With Wagner resorting to the short stuff often, Liton dictated with a few well controlled pull shots while he drove well down the ground showing great balance.
Mominul, despite being watchful was often shaky but seemed to have decided to grind it out, eating up deliveries and getting closer to New Zealand score of 328. With Wagner and Jamieson spraying it around and leaking runs, Boult and Southee came into the attack but Bangladesh were able to score 61 runs in the first 12 overs of the second session. Liton almost ran himself out while running a three and Mominul then reached his fifty off 147 deliveries, driving a Boult slower delivery through the cover for four. The Bangladesh skipper was tested quite frequently outside his off stump and although he left well there were a few close calls with the ball just missing the edge of the bat on a few occassions. In the 110th over Boult found the edge of Mominul's bat with the left-hander pushing at it slightly but the ball fell short of the lone man at slip.
New Zealand's plan seemed to be continuing the short stuff along with a few deliveries that tested the corridor of uncertainty but the new ball did not provide Kiwis with what was necessary. Wagner, frustrated at one point gave Mominul an earful after the latter had ducked under a few short deliveries.
The best thing for the Tigers was how they were able to put a price on their wickets, in terms of at least deliveries played if not runs. Wagner continued to keep up the chatter with Mominul as the session wore towards the end but any pitched up deliveries were taken advantage of, adding to Wagner's frustration with Kiwis made to toil. Tigers edged past 300 with Mominul and Liton partnership pushing past hundred soon after. Liton soon reached his fifty as Bangladesh made Kiwi bowlers toil in the second session, adding 87 runs in 26 overs without losing a wicket.