Sakib al Hasan did not have any century in the last two years but he now got two in two matches and that too in a tournament like World Cup, which cemented his status as Bangladesh’s finest ever cricketer further.
After hitting an unbeaten 124 off 99 balls against West Indies on Monday, which catapulted Bangladesh to a seven-wicket win, Sakib said he did not do anything differently in recent days that could bring a different outcome.
‘I have batted at number five for most of this period in the last two years. I didn’t get enough overs to bat on many occasions, I think batting at number three gives me more time in the innings,’ said Sakib.
The all-rounder is now in the form of his life with bat, scoring 384 runs in
four innings in the World Cup, which also made him the leading scorer in the tournament half-way through.
Sakib said he felt better with the bat sometimes in the past but did not get the result as much he was getting now.
‘I’ve been batting well. I don’t know if this is the best I have been batting or not, but so far it’s going well and fingers crossed, hope it continues,’ he said.
‘At this moment, I’ve been contributing well with both ball, bat and with my leadership, and it’s been key to our team.
‘I’d love to continue because there are four more games left, and if we have to play it safe, we have to play our best cricket. And everyone needs to contribute and chip in. At this moment, I’m doing well. So I need to make sure that I keep on doing what I’ve been doing,’ added the all-rounder.
Sakib began the World Cup with an innings of 75 runs in a 21-run win over South Africa before he followed it up with 64 and 121 runs respectively against New Zealand and England in defeats.
Unlike the past three matches, the pressure was high on Bangladesh as they had to win the game against West Indies at any cost if they were to stay relevant in the tournament.
But it turned difficult after West Indies posted 321-8, a total that Bangladesh had never chased down.
However, Sakib made it look easy with his superlative batting that had everything that a batsman could put. He was patient, calm and at times authoritative, which made West Indies bowlers unsure about their line of attack.
With Liton Das providing good support from the other end to stay unbeaten on 94, it was just matter of time for Sakib to finish things off and the duo did the job in style, guiding Bangladesh to a win with 51 balls to spare.
‘No one in the dressing room felt it would be tough. Everyone was chilling. It gave us a lot of confidence and belief. The way the openers started the innings, it further made the dressing room comfortable. At no point did we panic. It was the best part of the chase,’ said Sakib.
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