Asia Cup 2018: I was just playing with an empty mind against Rashid Khan, says Mahmudullah

Mahmudullah lauded Mustafizur Rahman for his bowling in the final over.

Mahmudullah Riyad scored 74 . (PTI)Bangladesh batsman Mahmudullah said he always enjoyed being the team's go-to man during a crisis situation, as pressure gets the best out of which. He showcased the same yet again as he scored a crucial 74 as Bangladesh won their Super 4 encounter against Afghanistan in Dubai. 

On Sunday (September 23), Mahmudullah and Imrul Kayes (72*) rescued Bangladesh when they were struggling at 87/5 by stitching a 128 runs partnership for the sixth wicket to steer the Tigers at 249/7. Mahmudullah struck 74 runs off 81 balls to revive Bangladesh’s innings. It was his 20th One Day International half-century.

It was not the first time when Mahmudullah took the charge for the national side. He did the same in their Champions Trophy game against New Zealand last year as well. 

As per reports in Cricbuzz, Mahmudullah said, “Yes, I do [enjoy being the crisis man]. The pressure gives me the opportunity to get into my rhythm and give back to my team as well. Pressure will always be there and we just need to find out ways to handle it, that's all.”

Commenting on how he brilliantly played leg-spinner Rashid Khan, Mahmudullah explained, “I didn't work too much [on his variations]. We played three times in four days, so there wasn't much time to think. I was just playing with an empty mind. We all know that Rashid Khan is one of the best strike bowlers around the world. That does not mean however that he is unplayable.”

He further added on the same, “Maybe we couldn't apply ourselves against him the way we wanted. In our [Mahmudullah and Imrul Kayes's 128-run sixth-wicket] partnership, our plan was to not give Rashid our wicket. We dug deep and we saw it through till the end.”

The 32-year-old also lauded Mustafizur Rahman for his brilliant bowling in the final over, in which he effectively defended eight runs, saying it was more significant than his own innings or the partnership with Kayes in Bangladesh’s win over Afghanistan.

Mahmudullah signed off by saying, “I give special credit to Mustafizur because he was struggling with a hamstring problem. I would say Mustafizur's last over [was more important]. Because, although, our partnership was important, defending eight off six balls is not that easy.”




By Rashmi Nanda - 24 Sep, 2018

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