Naeem leads the fightback

Dhaka: Naeem Islam scored a patient maiden century as Bangladesh reached 455 for six wickets and made West Indies toil hard on a placid wicket in the first Test in Dhaka on Thursday.

The home side rode on Naeem's 108 to cut West Indies' lead to 72 at close on the third day after the visitors had declared their first innings at 527 for four on Thursday.

It is already Bangladesh's second highest score in Tests and they can realistically hope to improve their best of 488 all out against Zimbabwe in Chittagong in 2005.

Bangladesh, who resumed on 164 for three, had a record 167-run fourth-wicket partnership between Naeem and Shakib to thank for taking them to this position.

"All along the game I try to maintain a certain game plan, select some shots and try to execute only those in the middle," Naeem, playing his seventh Test, told reporters.

"I don't want to try anything different. "I only try to play strokes to the balls that are in my zone," said the 25-year-old.

Shakib missed out on his third Test century when he fell to Ravi Rampaul for 89 half an hour into the second session with substitute fielder Assad Fudadin taking the catch at cover. Naeem played solidly, completing his century off 228 balls with a boundary through the fine leg off Tino Best.


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