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Mushfiq, Nurul happy to share keeping work: Mahmudullah

Mushfiq, Nurul happy to share keeping work: Mahmudullah

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Bangladesh skipper Mahmudullah insisted that everything is fine in the dressing room despite introducing a split keeping formula for the upcoming home series against New Zealand.
 
Since Russell Domingo announced that Nurul Hasan and Mushfiqur Rahim will keep two games apiece in the opening four matches against the visitors, there is widespread speculation all is not well in the national team dressing room considering Mushfiqur’s weakness to keep wickets in white-ball cricket.
 
“There is no impact (split keeping) in the dressing room. Mushfiq is a wonderful teammate. He is happy to share his keeping work with Sohan (Nurul),” Mahmudullah told reporters in a virtual press conference on Tuesday.
 
“Both are happy and the team management is happy. I think Sohan has been keeping really well. Mushfiq is outstanding throughout the years. Nobody is talking about Liton’s keeping (laughs). I think it will be better for the team if they share the work,” he added.
 
Mahmudullah added that he is confident that Afif Hossain will be available for the opening game of the series today although the left-handed batsman didn’t take part in the practice session at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium on Tuesday.
 
The southpaw suffered an injury while batting in the net as a sharp ball delivered by Taskin Ahmed came up from short of length and struck his elbow.
 
“He (Afif) is fine at the moment and we are hoping to get him tomorrow (Wednesday),” he said.
 
Mahmudullah also cautioned his teammates not to take New Zealand for granted as feels they might have to pay if they are over-confident.
 
Bangladesh beat Australia 4-1 during a five-match T20I series last month and they will also be targeting the same sort of performance against New Zealand in the upcoming series.
 
“You can consider yourself favourites in T20s, but if you become overconfident, it can be negative for you,” said Mahmudullah, who is three matches shy of becoming the first Bangladeshi player to play 100 T20Is.
 
“The team that reads the conditions well and has the hunger to do well on the day usually comes out on top in T20s. Having said that, they (New Zealand) are a much-disciplined side in their homework and execution level. We must remain focused and hungry, as we did against Australia. I would love to see the continuity.
 
“There will always be expectations especially when it has built up in our home conditions. We are very competitive and confident at home. We use our condition well. Every opportunity for the team and individual must be valued. Rest will take care of itself.
 
“It is a very good opportunity for our team. We are eager to prove that we are good at home. I am hopeful that the boys will be up for it,” he said, adding that he’s not sure how the wicket will behave.
 
“Wicket is tough to predict in Mirpur at any time but I feel it is better to have a positive mindset. We can adjust during the match if we see it is different than what we predicted, rather than going into the game with a mindset that it will be a 110-120 wicket. That would be a negative mindset. If we can execute our plans, we will get a good score here,” said Mahmudullah.