Bangladesh captain Mashrafee bin Murtaza defended the under-fire wicketkeeper-batsman Mushfiqur Rahim saying that they are more than happy with his professionalism and performance.
Mushfiq invited the wrath of many fans after making a blunder in the second one-day international against Afghanistan that may have cost Bangladesh the match.
In 47th over of Afghanistan innings, when the visitors still needed 13 runs with three wickets in hand debutant Mosaddek Hossain dragged Najibullah Zadran out of his crease to create a stumping chance.
But Mushfiq missed the chance denying Bangladesh a vital wicket and a potential win.
Zadran finally scored 22 runs and was out only when scores were level. It ensured Afghanistan coasted home despite a late hiccup.
Many believed if Mushfiq could complete the stumping the story would have been different. It’s not first time Mushfiq faltered behind stumps, though he still remained as country’s premium batsman.
Mushfiq’s history of emotional breakdown in a situation like this raised a fear if he would in right frame of mind in the series deciding third match today.
His over professionalism, which saw him spending hours in the nets without taking adequate break, also came under scrutiny as it often blamed for doing more harm than good.
But Mashrafee said the team has no issue with Mushfiq, who, according to the skipper, is an example for others in terms of professionalism.
‘Every individual has a different, style, thought process,’ Mashrafee said of his predecessor in ODI side. ‘If you keep an eye on Mushfiq’s professionalism you would probably find he is one step ahead of us.
‘Those of us who play cricket everyone expect us to show professionalism. You have to give Mushfiq hundred in hundred in this aspect. If today I blame him next day someone else point a finger at me because I can also make a mistake.
‘So it’s not fair to blame Mushfiq for one bad game. If we had scored 20 odd runs, may be the situation would have been different.
Mushfiq took part of the blame for his inability to score two runs from three balls against India in the ICC World Twenty, earning Bangladesh a one-run defeat for the first time in their history in any format.
Since then he never spoke to press and reportedly isolated himself from social association. But Mashrafee took no offence in his behaviour, thought some of his other team-mates privately described it as irritating.
‘We are not at all disturbed with his behaviour. Rather we are more than happy with him,’ said Mashrafee.