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Marlon’s magic


KHULNA – Middle-order batsman Marlon Samuels completed his third Test hundred of the year and fifth overall to marshal West Indies to 241 for two wickets off 82 overs at the close of play on the second day of the second Test against Bangladesh at Khulna today.

Samuels finished on 109 not out off 231 deliveries alongside Darren Bravo, who contributed an unbeaten 85 to an enterprising third-wicket stand worth 198 so far. At the close West Indies trailed Bangladesh by 146 runs.

West Indies were in a touch of bother early on when they were reduced to 43 for 2 in the 13th over of their reply with both openers, Kieran Powell and Chris Gayle, back in the pavilion.

Powell (13) pulled a short delivery from seam bowler Rubel Hossain (1-31) to Shakib Al Hasan on the square-leg boundary and Gayle (25) was caught behind by Musfiqur Rahim from a miscued sweep at left-arm spinner Sohag Gazi (1-67). Powell was out two balls after copping a blow to the head from a short bowl delivered by Hossain.

But Samuels joined Bravo through to lunch on 62 for 2 and their partnership flowered throughout the remainder of the day.

Samuels went to three figures from 227 balls and by stumps had struck 13 fours and a six, while Bravo’s 197-ball contribution contained seven fours.

The pair batted circumspectly after lunch, picking up the odd single or two. They brought up their 50-run stand from 121 deliveries. Samuels then stepped up the momentum and cover drove Al Hasan for a four before thumping him for a six over long-on. He soon got to a well-crafted half- century – a mix of caution and aggression. The pair brought up the century partnership, just before tea, taking the score to 146 going into the interval.

Not much changed in the last session. Both Samuels and Bravo milked the bowling with Samuels the aggressor, while Bravo played the supportive role on a track that offered the Bangladeshi bowlers precious little.

Earlier Bangladesh had resumed on 365 for 8 in their first innings with number 10 Abul Hasan, making his Test debut, on 100 not out.

Mahmudullah, who contributed 76 to a ninth-wicket stand of 184, offered a return catch to medium pacer Darren Sammy (3-74) in the third over of the morning.

Hasan advanced to 113 before being last out, a sixth victim for fast bowler Fidel Edwards (6-90), to fall four short of the record score by a number 10. Bangladesh were all out for 387.†

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