Day One Report from Bangladesh
October 11th 2017 | International
Simi Singh was the star of the show as Ireland Wolves made 255 on the opening day of their four-day match with Bangladesh A in Sylhet.
Singh, who went out to bat with Ireland in real trouble at 29-3, made an entertaining 121 that pleased both his teammates and the Bangladeshi fans in the stands. Smashing 19 fours and four sixes, his measured, counter-attacking innings was without doubt the highlight of the opening day.
James Shannon fell without scoring when Ebadat Hossain (**) found the top of his off stump in just the third over, but Andrew Balbirnie (10) and Jack Tector (18) steadied the ship and never looked threatened by the Bangladeshi pace attack.
It was a different story when the spin pairing of Sunzamul Islam and Mahedi Hasan joined the attack, taking a wicket each as Ireland quickly found themselves 29-3 with Sean Terry and Singh under pressure at the crease.
Terry played the anchor role showing solid defence and patience to prevent any further damage, while Singh went a more attacking route, going after boundaries to relieve pressure. The pair complemented each other perfectly for the remainder of the morning session, reaching 92-3 at lunch.
Terry fell relatively quickly after lunch taking on a short ball from Ebadat (2-26) as he picked up his second wicket, and from there it was tough for Singh to find a partner able to stick with him, as Ireland lost four wickets for just 61 runs, Singh himself making the majority of those as he approached his maiden first class century.
With tea taken at the fall of George Dockrell’s wicket, Andrew McBrine joined Singh at the crease for the start of the final session at a time when it looked Ireland would struggle to make 200. McBrine started slowly as Singh pushed on, getting the one run he needed for a century before adding another 21 quickly, but once Singh was given out LBW, McBrine took charge, hitting eight boundaries as he guided Ireland Wolves past 250, making a half century himself in the process.
When McBrine eventually fell, hitting a ball straight up to give the wicket keeper a simple catch, there were just 13 overs left in the day for Ireland to make an impact, but it took Nathan Smith only two to get the breakthrough, Zakir Hasan could by Sean Terry at mid-on for just one.
After a quick burst from Smith and Stuart Thomson with the new ball, Ireland Wolves turned to spin for the remainder of the session, with McBrine, Dockrell and Singh all getting a chance before Bangladesh A closed on 38-1.
At the close of play skipper Andrew Babirnie was disappointed in the total, but full of praise for Singh.
“Having won the toss it’s obviously disappointing to be bowled out for 255. It was an outstanding knock from Simi, who played with great conviction.
“He set the tone for this tour with the bat and hopefully we will push on as a batting unit over the next couple of weeks.”
Play will resume tomorrow at 9.30 local time, 4.30 in Ireland.