Kumar Sangakkara eclipsed 11,000 runs and became just the second player to score a double-hundred and a hundred in a Test, but could do nothing as Mominul Haque came to Bangladesh's rescue to draw the Test.
Haque and Shakib Al Hasan came to their side's rescue; the former scoring a century to help his side to level things up.
|Al Hasan||not out||43||113||88|
|Extras||13nb, 12b, 2lb||27|
Things started as a mixed-bag for Sri Lanka, who opened the batting on the first day, as both Frank Karunaratne and Jayan Silva fell to early wickets—notching just 31 and 11 respectively.
Just over an-hour-and-a-half into the Test and Sangakkara stepped up to the crease – batting well and forming an excellent partnership with Mehela Jayawardene as the pair notched 178 runs before Jayawardene's dismissal at lbw by Mahmudullah.
However, Sangakkara continued to stroke well with the bat as he sought 32 fours and eight sixes from the Bangladesh bowlers, linking well with Dinesh Chandimal to find another 67 runs before being caught by Imrul Kayes after Al Hasan's fast-bowl.
He continued to show patience with the bat despite seeing the remainder of his batting partners fall for 92, and for the 36-year-old, he was happy to see his focus pay off, telling ESPN CricInfo:
I was batting well, it's just that I wasn't going on with it. Maybe I have been taking the wrong option at times and just losing concentration at an important time.
It was just a case of getting that in mind, leaving really well, knowing where my off stump is, and then pacing my innings really well. Rather than being too tense and trying to concentrate all the time. I tried to switch on and off at the right time, and keep my mind fresh to score runs. That was really the difference for me.
Bangladesh then found 426 in reply, 161 runs short of the score set by Sri Lanka, as M.S Rahman and Kayes struck a partnership of 221 after Iqbal's wicket fell after just four balls in two minutes.
Then followed a speedy fall of wickets, as the rest of Bangladesh's batting outfit fell for just 175 between them, as the hosts struggled to match Sangakkara's sublime innings.
And then, he continued just where he left off after Karunaratne walked after his 15 runs—caught by Hossain, bowled by Mahmudullah—as Silva and Sangakkara continued to pile on the runs, with the left-hander hitting his score of 105 before being bowled by Gazi.
Such was the nature of Sangakkara's showing with the bat, that even England's media circle were wondering if history was set to be made:
Is the 456 Test match aggregate record of Graham Gooch under threat? Kumar Sangakkara currently 60 not out following 319 in first innings— BBC TMS (@bbctms) February 7, 2014
Sri Lanka continued to pile on the pressure for Bangladesh's second innings, as Chandimal hit his own century alongside Mathews, before declaring at 305 from four wickets.
The power of Sri Lanka's batting line-up highlights just how the side have amassed their high total in this Test, through the experience of Sangakkara and Jayawardene (who have over 22,000 Test runs between them), as well as young-and-hungry stars like 24-year-old T20 captain Chandimal.
|Karunaratne||c Hossain||b Mahmudullah||15||46||38|
|Jayawardene||lbw||b Al Hasan||11||39||29|
The Rajasthan Royals batsman-and-wicket-keeper will only benefit from batting alongside two of the world's greatest batsmen, and learning to work within the Sri Lanka top order could well see the youngster go on to emulate his current team mates.
As Sangakkara walked off of the field in Chittigong, having amassed over 11,000 Test runs, you knew that you were watching a man who had achieved what he had set out to do during the Test – but a man who remained disappointed to not surpass Gooch's Test-record 456 runs:
Iqbal and Rahman opened the batting in the second innings, however, neither managed to reach a half-century before Rithanage bowled Iqbal, with Perera then picking up the wickets of Rahman and Kayes after just 151 wickets.
But then came the turning of the tie, as Haque hit 100 to put his side right back in it, and with 43 runs of Al Hasan, the comeback was complete and Bangladesh fought back to level the tie, against all odds.
Congratulations to Mominul Haque for the brilliant 100. #BanvSL— Bangladesh Cricket (@BanCricket) February 8, 2014
An excellent show of resilience from Bangladesh, at a time where most had written the side off but showed true Test spirit - fighting to the end and salvaging the most unlikely of draws.
And at just 22 years of age, the future is certainly bright for Haque, who has already amassed three Test hundreds - just where Haque and Chandimal will be in the batting stakes in five years, who knows, but the future is certainly bright for the two batsmen.