Off-spinner Mehedi Hasan’s 5-38 outclassed Brendan Taylor’s heroic unbeaten knock of 106 off 167 balls as Bangladesh beat Zimbabwe by 218 runs in the second Test in Dhaka on Thursday to level the two-match Test series 1-1.
Mehedi dismissed Zimbabwe’s lower-order cheaply soon after he removed Peter Moor (13) to break a 66-run fifth wicket stand with Taylor as the visitors were bundled out for 224 runs in their second innings.
Zimbabwe’s hopes of securing a draw ended with the break of this partnership, whose 139-run sixth wicket stand in the first innings took the visitors past the 300 mark.
Taylor, who struck his sixth Test hundred – back-to-back in this match after hitting 110 runs in the first innings remained unbeaten till the end as wickets fell from the other end, barring the visitors from notching up a Test series victory after seven years.
Mehedi’s spin bowling partner Taijul Islam claimed 2-93 in the second innings, taking his tally to 18 wickets in the two-match Test series.
He also surpassed his previous best individual performance in a test series of taking 17 wickets against the same opposition in 2014 in a three-match Test series.
However, off-spinner Mehedi caused most of the damage on the final day as he completed his fifth five-wicket haul in Test career to give Bangladesh a series leveling victory after they lost the first Test in Sylhet by 151 runs.
Pacer Mustafizur Rahman gave Bangladesh the first breakthrough on the final day as he bowled Sean Williams out for 13 runs in the ninth over of the day’s play.
Spinner Taijul then dismissed Sikandar Raza (13) by taking a sharp catch of his own bowling to put Bangladesh on top in the contest but Taylor and Moor frustrated Bangladesh bowlers till the lunch break with a dangerous-looking stand.
However, Bangladesh didn’t take long time to dismiss Zimbabwe following the fall of Moor as Mehidy dismissed Donald Tiripano (0), Brendon Mavuta (0) and Kyle Jarvis (one) in a quick succession after Regis Chakabva was run out for two before the dismissals.
This was Bangladesh’s first Test victory after losing four consecutive Test matches this year and first since they defeated Australia on home soil in August last year.
Earlier on Wednesday, Bangladesh declared their second innings on 224 for six at the tea break after skipper Mahmudullah completed his second Test century in more than eight-and-a-half year.
Zimbabwe had been all out for 304 in reply to Bangladesh’s mammoth first innings total of 522-7d.
Mushfiqur Rahim was declared as player of the match while Taijul was adjudged as player of the series.
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