As Bangladesh get set for their first Test in India, The Ring Side View looks back at some iconic moments in games between the two countries.
The 2007 World Cup – When the Bangla tigers tamed India
India’s star-studded line-up gave its nation hope of a successful 2007 World Cup campaign in the Caribbean. However, those hopes were jolted by an unfancied Bangladesh side. For starters, India limped to 191, an innings stifled my Mashrafe Mortaza, Mohammad Rafique and Abdur Razzak. Later, three teenagers, who were to carry Bangladesh cricket forward in the years ahead, shouldered the burden and completed the run-chase with relative ease. Tamim Iqbal (51), Shakib Al Hasan (53) and Mushfiqur Rahim (56 not out) served notice with their gutsy performances and gave a glimpse of what was to come. Bangladesh went on to qualify for the Super Eights as India never recovered and were knocked out after losing to Sri Lanka.
MS Dhoni’s Jonty Rhodes-moment in the ICC World T20 2016
It was a game that perhaps signified Dhoni the cricketer. It wasn’t only about captaincy, but wicketkeeping and general awareness on the field. In a crucial ICC World T20 2016 game, India needed a victory to keep their campaign on track, but Bangladesh proved tricky. Chasing 147 to win, Bangladesh were in complete control until the final three balls, when they needed two runs. Mushfiqur and Mahmudullah holed out to deep mid-wicket and with two needed off the last ball, Dhoni set his field, stood closer as Hardik Pandya ran in. The batsman missed and Dhoni sprinted to shatter the stumps and find the non-striker short of his mark. That picture reflects the thin line between victory and defeat.
Welcoming Bangladesh to the Test scene
It was the dawn of a new era for Bangladesh cricket when they made their Test debut in November 2000. Up against them were their neighbours India, led by Sourav Ganguly, captaining his country for the first time in Tests. Aminul Islam’s century took Bangladesh to 400 and at one stage they had India in trouble, but Ganguly and Sunil Joshi rescued India and took them past the Bangladesh total. The hosts’ inexperience was then exposed in the second essay as they were shot out for 91. India chased the 63-run target easily. For a major part of the game, Bangladesh had shown good fight and some may say it was a good beginning. They had to wait for 35 Tests to record their first victory though.
Sachin Tendulkar’s 100th international century and Bangladesh’s victory
When Bangladesh met India in the Asia Cup 2012, most expected Dhoni’s men to charge to victory. However, it was a game of anti-climaxes. Sachin Tendulkar had waited for over a year to score his 100th international century and on this day, he stood at the wicket and got a patient century. His moment was celebrated by the Bangladeshi crowd, who gave him a rousing reception. The players to walked up to congratulate him as Tendulkar looked up to the sky to thank the almighty. It wasn’t his best knock though as his 114 came off 147 balls. India managed 289, which should have been defended. However, in a belligerent attack, Bangladesh’s batsmen charged at the end with the top order setting the platform. Again Tamim (70), Shakib (49) and Mushfiqur (46 not out) were in the party with support from Jahurul Islam (53) and Nasir Hossain (54). The victory was achieved with four balls to spare. As most media outlets stated that day, Bangladesh had stolen Tendulkar’s thunder.
Sachin Tendulkar’s 34th Test century
It was a difficult year for Tendulkar for he battled the tennis elbow injury. The impact of that injury was palpable and many felt the end of a great career was near. However, Tendulkar soldiered on and battled to keep his dreams alive. When India arrived in Bangladesh in 2004, the focus was on him as he was a century away from equalling Sunil Gavaskar’s record of 34 Test hundreds. In the first Test at Dhaka, Tendulkar walked in at 24 for two on Day Two and anchored the Indian innings. The century was well-paced but also saw a few chances go down. When Tendulkar walked off the field after equalling the record, Gavaskar himself came down to receive and congratulate him. A big weight was off his shoulders but Tendulkar had to wait another year for his record-breaking 35th. Meanwhile, Irfan Pathan ensured Bangladesh didn’t get close to India’s score and secured an innings victory.