Bangladesh T20 skipper Mahmudullah on Friday backed pacer Mustafizur Rahman despite his failure to deliver in the death overs that eventually made them pay in the three-match series opener against Pakistan at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur.
Mustafizur, who gave Bangladesh an excellent start in defending their score of 127-7, finished the first spell with 1-3 in two overs but he later on conceded eight and 15 runs respectively in his final two overs that saw him finish with 1-26 in the match.
“It can happen to a bowler when batters try to get runs,” Mahmudullah said after the match.
“I think the bowlers did a great job with the ball. We were very close. I think the credit goes to Shadab (Khan) and Nawaz (Mohammad) as they did very well,” he said, adding that their batting unit should take more responsibility.
“When we chose to bat first, it looked a very good wicket to bat on but I think there was a bit of help for the bowlers as well but having said that it’s not the excuse,” he said.
“We should have put better performance with the bat, especially at the top order. That had been lacking throughout the World Cup as well. Hopefully, we can come up with the batter plan tomorrow (today) and try to execute it,” he added.
Meanwhile, Pakistani pace bowler Hasan Ali, who was adjudged man of the match after finishing with 3-22, expressed his satisfaction for contributing to the team and dedicated his man of the match award to the fans for their backing.
“I know I haven’t performed up to the mark in the World Cup as far as fulfilling the expectation is concerned and there are always ups and downs in cricket.
“I always wanted to give 110 percent. But there was something missing. That was the reason behind the no-ball issue and I was giving away runs and not picking wickets. When I came to Bangladesh I decided to work very hard so that I can minimize my shortcomings,” he added.
Pakistani captain Babar Azam praised his middle-order to bail them through in the series opener while he added that the wicket was a bit difficult.
“I think the wicket was a little difficult. Credit to the middle order, the way they showed the skills. Fakhar, Khushdil, the way Nawaz finished,” said Babar.