Only 124.3 overs have been played - just a little bit more than four sessions technically - in the second Test match between Bangladesh and Pakistan but the latter have a massive chance of emerging victorious. It looked like the match would end in a draw for all money but Bangladesh's rather risky batting approach on day four meant a Pakistan win was on the cards.
After close to 200 overs being lost due to persistent rain and wet outfield, play began on day four at around 10.50 am. Pakistan started the day with 188 for two with two set batters unbeaten - Babar Azam on 71 and Azhar Ali on 52.
Babar and Azhar struck one boundary each before both of them got out in quick succession. Azhar was caught behind off Ebadot Hossain in the second over of the day. Khaled Ahmed got his first Test wicket by dismissing Babar Azam leg-before. Babar made 76 and Azhar scored 56.
Ebadot and Khaled tested the new batters - Mohammad Rizwan and Fawad Alam. The old ball was not bouncing enough on a damp wicket and Fawad, in particular, was beaten and squared up multiple times. He could've been dismissed on 11 but an edge went unheard by the fielders. As time went on, Rizwan and Fawad started to get into the groove.
The fifth-wicket partnership between the duo remained unbroken at lunch and the visiting side added 60 to the overnight 54 to total for the loss of two wickets.
Rizwan and Fawad added 58 more runs to their total and declared the innings as soon as they reached 300. Before that, both the batters notched up their half-century.
Shaheen Shah Afridi bowled the first over for Pakistan but after that the umpires suggested that the light was not sufficient for the fast bowlers to operate. Babar then had spinners - Sajid Khan and Nauman Ali - bowl from both ends.
Pakistan got the first breakthrough in the third over as debutant Mahmudul Hasan Joy edged the ball to slip off Sajid. Shadman's poor run of form continued as he was dismissed for 3 by Sajid. And just before tea, they had Mominul Haque run out. Bangladesh went into tea at 22 for three.
The procession did not end in the evening session. Mushfiqur Rahim played a shot that was uncalled for and even Fawad Alam, who took the catch at midwicket, looked surprised. He scored 5.
The in-form Liton Das played a slog-sweep for a boundary but he too was guilty of throwing his wicket away. He advanced down the wicket and hit the ball straight to Sajid, the bowler. He was the fifth batter to go.
Shakib Al Hasan, who came in at seven, played some aggressive strokes off the spinners. On the other hand, Najmul Hossain Shanto who came in at three lived dangerously, surviving a few close shouts. But Sajid had his man in the end and Bangladesh were 65 for six.
Mehidy Hasan too lost his wicket as he attempted to drag the ball to the on-side from well outside off. He was the last batter to be dismissed on day four and the home side finished the day at 76 for seven, still needing 25 runs to make Pakistan bat again. Shakib was not out on 23.
For Pakistan, Sajid claimed all the wickets that fell apart from the run out. Nauman bowled well too, keeping the pressure.
Everyone thought this game was going to be drawn, but individual brilliance and some appalling cricket have ensured that a Pakistan victory is surely on despite lack of time.
All said and done, thoroughly disappointing from Bangladesh. Their batting effort has had no real plan, and even in the dying moments, their sole focus appeared to be to hurry the scoring along and get to that 101-run mark to avoid the follow-on.
Even if the follow-on is avoided, the visitors might fancy their chances of having a quick 15-25 overs of batting and then going in for the win with fielders around the bat. Of course, all provided the light and the weather holds good.