Soumya Sarkar plays a shot during his knock of 64*    Getty Images
Soumya Sarkar plays a shot during his knock of 64* Getty Images

Soumya Sarkar and Shakib Al Hasan propelled Bangladesh to 128 for 2 against New Zealand at the stroke of lunch on Day One of the second Test at Christchurch. Sarkar and Shakib displayed the perfect example of counterattacking and battered the inconsistent hosts bowling and have scored an unbeaten 90-run stand for the third wicket off just 101 deliveries. Sarkar (64) also scored his maiden Test fifty to ensure the visitors resurrected their fallen innings after being struck by Kiwi pacers early in the game. Shakib has the aggressor in this partnership as he is unbeaten on 39 from 46 deliveries laced with 7 cracking boundaries.

Asked in to bat first by Kane Williamson, the New Zealand skipper, Bangladesh had worst start as they lost their opener and also their stand-in skipper Tamim Iqbal (5) with just 7 runs on the board. Tamim tried to guide Tim Southee delivery down the leg side but swing and extra bounce did it as he gloved the ball into wicketkeeper BJ Watling s gloves. In came No. 3 batsman Mahmudullah who had to rework on their strategy and stabilise the innings after the early fall. But the Kiwi pace attack came in hard and came in banging against Sarkar and Mahmudullah; the latter one in particular.

Full Cricket Scorecard: Bangladesh vs New Zealand, 2nd Test Christchurch

Southee and Trent Boult received an excellent amount of swing and bounce from the wicket which posed daunting questions to both batsmen. There were some missed chances wherein the ball missed the bat by an inch or the ball dropped just before the slip cordon. But it came in with no surprise when Mahmudullah edged Boult s delivery into Watling s gloves.

Bangladesh were tottering at 38 for 2 when Shakib walked in and it appeared like another Bangladesh collapse was en route. But against the run of play, both Shakib and Sarkar went all guns blazing as they displayed some great strokes. They counterattacked in an apt manner to disturb the line and length of the Kiwi bowling to neutralise them who looked daunting at one point. Williamson tried various changes in his bowling department as he introduced Colin de Grandhomme and Neil Wagner well before anticipation. Of the lot, de Grandhomme was welcomed by Shakib who scored 3 back-to-back boundaries. There was a golden chance for the hosts to bounce back into the game just before the lunch when Sarkar fat-edged de Grandhomme s delivery towards first slip but Jeet Raval tried pouncing on the ball from second slip eventually making a blunder out of it.

New Zealand will have to re-gather themselves and think of where they lost the session and grip of the game, whereas the visitors will be expecting both Shakib and Sarkar to continue scoring runs in the same manner or at least take their team to a respectable position by the end of the day.

Brief scores:

Bangladesh 128 for 2 (Soumya Sarkar 64*, Shakib Al Hasan 39*; Trent Boult 1 for 27) vs New Zealand