Bangladesh opener Mahmudul Hasan Joy said patience was key behind his almost five-hour stay at the crease which helped launch the platform for his side to take a historic first innings lead against New Zealand in the ongoing first Test match at Mount Maunganui.

This is the first time Bangladesh have taken a first-innings lead batting second outside of Asia.

The 21-year old Joy, who scored 78 off 228 balls, laced with seven fours, also credited his batting partners for encouraging him to score his maiden Test fifty.

“I just wanted to play my natural game. Our practice sessions came in handy, we got to play a warm-up match, and I played well in that. I built up confidence from that,” said the right-handed batsman to the media Monday, alluding to the two-day practice match against New Zealand XI where he scored 66.

“My plan was not to focus on how many runs I’d score, I just wanted to play as many balls as possible and the runs would take care of itself. My batting partners Shadman (Islam) bhai, (Nazmul Hossain) Shanto bhai and (Mominul Haque) Showrab bhai told me runs would come if I stayed at the wicket. I had to be calm.”

At stumps on day three Bangladesh were 401 for six in reply to New Zealand’s 328, a lead of 73 with four wickets in hand.

Joy first put together an opening partnership of 43 with Shadman before adding 104 for the second wicket with Shanto, and by the time the former departed in the 70th over, Bangladesh were in a strong position.

“At the beginning, Shadman bhai and my plan was to play out the new ball and face each delivery as it comes. If we had looked too far ahead then success might have eluded us so playing ball by ball was the right approach to be successful. So our opening partnership was productive, and then when Shanto bhai came to the middle, our stand was also good,” said Joy.

“At times when I was a bit aggressive in playing shots, Shanto bhai told me to be in control. Mominul bhai told me the same thing during our partnership. When I kept playing dot balls, he (Mominul) told me to continue and not to worry.”

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