Bangladesh all-rounder Mehidy Hasan Miraz said on Sunday that Mustafizur Rahman gave him the belief of winning the game against India in the three-match series opener at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur.
When Mustafizur walked inside the ground as the last batsman, Bangladesh still needed 51 runs to script a historical win and the duo came up with a rearguard act to earn one wicket over the visitors to go 1-0 up in the series.
“Mustafizur always gave me the assurance that I don’t have to worry about him (when he came to bat) and it gave me a self-belief that we can win this game,” Mehidy told reporters after the game.
“This assurance from Mustafizur was a huge boost considering he was saying that he won’t get out even if he is hit on his body.
“If I thought that we would lose or we won’t be able to get the remaining runs, it wouldn’t have worked out like this. It was definitely a do-or-die situation. There was no problem getting out while trying to hit.
“When we needed 50 (51) runs, I took the chance. But when we needed 14 or 10 runs, then I got really excited. We have lost a lot of close matches, but Mustafizur kept giving me encouragement. He told me not to hurry and not to hit a six. You bat along the ground, we will get the runs.
“I was very clear with my game plan. I knew exactly what I wanted to do. I think that helped out also.
Mehidy, who also played a match-winning knock against Afghanistan alongside Afif Hossain this year, said that he would keep this innings close to his heart because it was more intense and the win came against India.
“Both were important knocks but this is more special. This was the last wicket and we needed 52 (51) runs. This was definitely more special,” he said, adding that Shakib Al Hasan’s five-wicket haul came through a brilliant display of spin bowling.
“Shakib bhai always performs…It was important to bowl with the correct line and length in the early stages, which both of us did well. Maybe the batters were at fault, but the game was never out of our grasp,” said Mehidy, who came in the middle when Bangladesh were left struggling at 128-6 while chasing 187 runs.