Bangladeshi batsman Naimul Shanto posted his first test on Wednesday and helped his team reach 302-2 on stumps on the first day of the first test against Sri Lanka.
Shanto finished the day without a loss at 126, after Bangladesh won the throw and chose to fight first at Palekele International Stadium. He and the captain Mominul Hake (64) entered into a continuous 150-year partnership for the third gate.
Shanto, who came into the game under pressure after a series of poor results in the home series against the West Indies, was sent down to 28 by Shki Lanka goalkeeper Niroshan Diquela.
He took full advantage of the postponement by killing during the day after entering the match in the third. During his six-hour knock, Shanto faced 288 deliveries and hit 14 fours and one six.
“I just wanted to watch and be patient,” Shanto said.
“If the ball was in my power zones, I wanted to play my shots. I didn’t mean to do anything, I was just doing the basics right.”
The 22-year-old Shanto represented his country at two ICC World Under-19 Championships and sent his first 100-year-old first class.
Tamim Iqbal gave Bangladesh an early advantage as it attacked from the start without allowing Sri Lankan tailors to settle.
He hit 90 of 101 balls, but escaped by pushing one to slip to give Vishwa Fernando his second inning strap. Fernando was the only successful bowler for Sri Lanka on Day 1.
Tamim was gaining limits at will, finding gaps easily as Sri Lanka quickly switched to a defensive mindset that spread across the field.
After Tamim’s dismissal, Mominul was patient and made the most of the loose balls.
Although Suranga Lakmal did not take a gate, he was the most impressive among the Borilants from Sri Lanka. Lahiru Kumara was the fastest of the four tailors, but he was wayward and did not pose a great threat.
Sri Lanka took the second new ball after the 80’s, but the sailors failed to break through the stand.
“There was a little moisture in the morning. I don’t think we were able to achieve our length as well as we could,” said Sri Lanka wadding coach Grant Flower.
“If we can get them out below 500, we’ve done well. However, two quick weekends early in the morning can help.”