Bangladesh skipper Mashrafee bin Murtaza refused to blame wicketkeeper Mushfiqur Rahim despite his one blunder appeared to have cost them their World Cup match against New Zealand at the Oval on Wednesday.
Mushfiq made a school-boy like error to help Kane Williamson avoid a run out, denying Bangladesh a chance to put New Zealand under extreme pressure a crucial phase of their innings.
New Zealand were trembling replying Bangladesh’s modest total of 244 runs when Mushfiq missed the unbecoming of a wicketkeeper with an experience of playing over a decade.
Williamson was trying to rebuild New Zealand innings after Sakib al Hasan dismissed two openers Martin Guptill (25) and Collin Munro (24) to leave the side stuttering at 55-2.
Ross Taylor pushed Sakib towards mid-on to run for single, but Williamson, who then was batting eight, was late to react.
Tamim Iqbal made perfect at the striker’s end that could have hit the stumps directly.
But Mushfiq moved in front of the stumps to collect the ball and dislodged the bail with his elbow in the process.
Williamson, who was at least two metres away when the ball came to the wicketkeeper, survived unbelievably and punished Bangladesh inevitably.
New Zealand could have been reduced to 61-3 if Mushfiq could complete the run out.
‘I don’t think we should go after him because it [can] happen to anybody,’ Mashrafee told reporters after Bangladesh’s two-wicket loss. ‘He also tried hard to get him out. The throw was straight but as keeper, it was difficult to find if the throw had been coming straight… that sort of mistake always happens,’ said Mashrafee.
Williamson went on to add 105-run with Taylor for the third wicket that finally helped New Zealand overtake Bangladesh despite the late fight back the spinners.
Instead of missed run out chance, Mashrafee found Mushfiq’s own run out earlier in the game as the turning point.
Mushfiq was run out for 19 trying to take a difficult single after he shared 50-run with Sakib al Hasan.
The duo was slowly taking momentum towards Bangladesh’s way after New Zealand managed to send back Bangladesh’s two openers within 60 runs.
‘The turning point was that run out I think because they both got set. Then Sakib and [Mohammad] Mithun had 41-run partnership. Those two partnerships if they go to 80 or hundred it could have been different,’ said Mashrafee.
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