DHAKA // The Sri Lanka spinner Muttiah Muralitharan took five wickets to reduce Bangladesh to 177-9 in their first innings of the first Test in Dhaka. Resuming at 95-4 at tea, Bangladesh added only 82 runs and lost five wickets because of Muralitharan's aggressive attack before the game was stopped because of bad light with seven scheduled overs left. Bangladesh are still 116 runs behind Sri Lanka's first innings total of 293. In the last session, Muralitharan dismissed Shakib Al Hasan (27), caught by Mahela Jayawardene, trapped Mashrafe bin Mortaza lbw before dismissing Shahadat Hossain for five. Dammika Prasad struck first after tea and bowled Rokibul Hossain. Rangana Herath dismissed Mehrab Hossain (28), who gave a catch to Mahela Jayawardene to end his sixth-wicket partnership with Hasan that had produced 41 runs.
After a steady opening partnership of 44 before tea, Muralitharan removed opener Tamim Iqbal (17), who lunged for a defensive stroke but got hit on the glove and gave the catch to Malinda Warnapura at short leg. Paceman Chaminda Vaas dismissed Imrul Kayes caught at slip and then had the Bangladesh skipper Mohammad Ashraful (12) caught at cover point by Tillakaratne Dilshan. The latter was Vaas' 350th wicket in Test cricket. Junaid Siddique was on 29 when he dragged Muralitharan's trademark "doosra" onto the stumps just before the tea break as the hosts lost four wickets for just 50 runs.
Thilan Samaraweera scored 91 runs to help Sri Lanka push on from a precarious 172-6 at the start of play to a respectable total. Samaraweera and Vaas refused to bow down in the morning session, and added 98 runs before the first wicket fell. Mortaza made the breakthrough, taking the new ball and getting Vaas (37) caught behind by Mushfiqur Rahim. The Sri Lanka tail folded quickly after Vaas' departure, losing the last four wickets for 23 runs and the Bangladesh spinner Shakib earlier completed his five-wicket haul. *AP