Bangladesh v England: Fantastic advert for five-day Test cricket

By Jonathan AgnewBBC cricket correspondent
England celebrate
The Chittagong Test produced an enthralling climax on the final morning

England's tense 22-run victory over Bangladesh in Chittagong was a fantastic advert for Test cricket - and for five-day Test cricket.

This nonsense is still being purveyed about four days being the way forwardexternal-link for Test cricket - of course it isn't.

This is another fine example of why you need five days in a Test match.

You let the match take its proper course - you don't cram overs in - and you often get a good result and occasionally a match like this, which has been absolutely brilliant.

Bangladesh are still seeking their first Test win against England but in their own country they are a force to be reckoned with, playing an exciting brand of cricket in conditions that the visitors are often not familiar with.

They don't play enough Test matches of course, this was their first match since July 2015. They play a lot of one-day cricket and that's rather reflected in the way they go about their game.

But it's exciting, it's fresh and they came very close indeed to claiming their biggest scalp, having previously only beaten Zimbabwe and a far below strength West Indies.

The fans love the game here but unfortunately in the past it has not been part of the culture to come and watch Test cricket.

Bangladesh fans
Bangladesh fans flocked in at Chittagong as they sensed a maiden Test victory over England

They all pile in for one-day cricket but Test cricket is usually played when people are working, though they are all following it on the television and the radio.

The more Test cricket they play, they will hopefully be able to get more people into the ground but it's not easy here. It's not a rich country, people have to go to work and can't just take time off.

Make no mistake, they all love their cricket.

'Seamers give Cook control'

It's tempting to say this is just a place to bowl spinners but Stuart Broad and Ben Stokes were vital for England and showed that the quicker bowlers can have an influential role here.

They are very fit and they are challenging in any conditions.

These days, bowlers are so skilled at reverse swing and these are ideal conditions for that, very dry, quite abrasive pitch and the ball does get roughed up quite quickly.

They are very adept at using that to make the ball swing, which is a 25-year-old phenomenon now since Pakistan's Waqar Younis and Wasim Akram first demonstrated it.

The England seamers are important because they give captain Alastair Cook control.

Looking ahead to the next game in Dhaka starting on Friday, that's an area that he will still be concerned about. His spinners just don't get a grip of the game in the way that Test quality spinners should do.

I would be surprised if England play the same team. They will have a think about Surrey's uncapped left-arm spinner Zafar Ansari to provide another option - whether they play him in place of a seamer or use him as a batsman/spinner and drop Gary Ballance perhaps, who made only 10 runs in the match.

If you look at the way Cook went straight for seam bowlers on the final day when Bangladesh only needed 33 more runs, he felt his best chance of winning the match was through his quick bowlers.

We know the issue about England's spinners. That's why they have got Gareth Batty and he bowled well in the second innings, taking 3-65 from 17 overs.

Cook could have bowled him on the final morning, he probably would have been the next one to bowl if England hadn't taken a wicket.

Stuart Broad and Ben Stokes
Broad and Stokes had combined figures of 4-51 in 26.3 overs in the second innings

The captain knows England are still vulnerable in that department and the opponents know that as well.

I imagine that the pitch for the second Test in Dhaka, which might have been flat had Bangladesh won here, will probably suit the spinners again and hopefully we'll get another interesting game.

The ball turned consistently and clearly unsettled the batsmen but wasn't unplayable and it made for a really good spectacle.

DRS sets new record

There were a record 26 reviews and it underlines the difficulties for umpires when there is a lot of spin bowling going on and batsmen are getting on to the front foot.

The tradition has always been to give the benefit of the doubt to the batsman in borderline decisions, but there is no benefit of the doubt with DRS.

Just getting on the front foot against the spinner when the ball hits you on the pad is no escape any more, the computer gives you out.

All the practice and preparation has to be a good thing ahead of the challenge awaiting in India.

Let's hope we get a similar pitch in Dhaka, with more spin and bite, not a flat, horrible surface like we see in the UAE.

If England come through and win 2-0 that should set them up for the five-match series in India which starts on 9 November.

They will be pleased with the way they fought, but they've got to get more runs out of their top order batsmen and their spinners have still got some work to do.

Jonathan Agnew was speaking to BBC Sport's Jamie Lillywhite.

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