England enjoyed a day of leisurely batting practice before unleashing their seam attack to leave Bangladesh facing the prospect of a huge defeat.
The only point of debate was how many runs England would score before they declared.
Shahadat conceded 101 from his first 12 overs in Test cricket
It was clear from the 46 overs Bangladesh bowled on the first day that they lacked the firepower to dismiss England, and only a casual approach by the batsmen stood between them and a run-feast.
Michael Vaughan's innings grew in fluency after a rather awkward start, and it was not long before his favourite extra cover drive was being executed to perfection.
Marcus Trescothick's only moments of weakness appeared to be his determination to late cut the left arm spinner, Rafique.
He had a double hundred for the taking when he nibbled once too often and was caught behind for 194.
We know Ian Bell will enjoy an extended run in the team, but Graham Thorpe's continued presence cannot be guaranteed now that he has signalled the end of his international career.
I still maintain that England should simply choose their strongest team and if, this week, that includes Thorpe, I do not see how that position has changed.
But had he failed today, it would certainly have given his detractors more ammunition. In fact, he batted busily - determined not to appear like a batsman batting for his life - and ended with 42 not out.
PLAYER OF THE DAY
Of all the many shots played by England's batsmen today - especially those during an amazing morning in which 177 runs were scored in 30 overs - I enjoyed those by Bell the most.
He resembles Mike Atherton at the crease, but plays more positively and his back foot forcing strokes through the off side are beautiful.
Vaughan finally put Bangladesh out of their misery 20 minutes after tea with England's lead standing at 420.
Ian Bell boosted his chances of playing in the Ashes series
They could have scored hundreds more, and there seemed little doubt they had already scored hundreds more than they actually needed.
At least this was a declaration that showed some respect to their opponents, in contrast to the South Africans who, having bowled a weakened Zimbabwe out for 54 this winter, declared with a lead of only 280 with a view to finishing the game in two days.
It did not take long for Matthew Hoggard to strike the first blow.
DAY THREE PROSPECTS
Either a monsoon, or a massive England victory.