Cricket: Shakib, Tamim steady Bangladesh after Cummins onslaught
DHAKA (Reuters) - Australia's Pat Cummins rattled Bangladesh with a three-wicket burst in a terrific spell of fast bowling as the hosts reached 96 for three wickets at lunch on the opening day of the first test on Sunday.
On a pitch which offered significant turn and variable bounce in the first session, Cummins bowled with unrelenting hostility to claim 3-29.
Opener Tamim Iqbal and all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan celebrated their 50th test appearances by forging an 86-run partnership for the fourth wicket to arrest the slide at the Shere Bangla National Stadium.
Shakib was on 48 at the break with Tamim 33 and Bangladesh needing the veterans to continue the good work in the second session.
Having opted for a three-pronged spin attack in the first of the two test matches, Bangladesh captain Mushfiqur Rahim elected to bat but Cummins forced them on to the back foot immediately.
His pace and unnerving bounce left the hosts reeling at 10 for three inside four overs, and had the right-arm paceman on a hat-trick.
Cummins gave an indication of things to come with his third delivery which flew off the shoulder of Soumya Sarkar's blade and soared over the agitated slip fielders.
Two balls later, the batsman was caught in the gully by Peter Handscomb.
The 24-year-old Cummins returned to dismiss the scoreless duo of Imrul Kayes and Sabbir Rahman caught behind, the leaden-footed batsmen paying the price for playing away from their body.
With the home team in dire straits, Shakib and Tamim refused to retreat into a defensive shell and batted positively.
With two left-handers at the crease, Australia captain Steve Smith pressed off-spinner Nathan Lyon into service but Shakib and Tamim looked fluent against the slow bowlers.
Shakib hit seven boundaries, while Tamim hit Lyon for a couple of sixes as they continued the rebuilding work.
(Reporting by Amlan Chakraborty in New Delhi; Editing by Ian Ransom)