It was not easy to fill the place of someone
like Shakib Al Hasan but Mahmudullah led by example as far as the captaincy
is concerned in the first T20 match against India at the Arun Jaitley Stadium
in New Delhi on Sunday.
He struck the winning six and scored an unbeaten 15 off seven balls, which
wasn't significant. What was significant was his shrewdness to rotate the
bowlers, who made the task easier for the batsmen to win the game by seven
India was without their regular captain Virat Kohli as he was rested but
still the batting line up formidable one. To restrict this line up to just
148-6 was credible effort from the bowlers and here Mahmudullah ticked all
The way he rotated his bowlers and brought out the best of them paved the
platform of Bangladesh's first T20 victory against India in ninth attempt.
And it was also their first victory in any format of cricket against the
might neighbours at their home soil also. What made the victory more pleasing
was that it was the 1000th T20 Intentional matches in the history.
Mahmudullah used as many as eight bowlers and it was the only second time
in Bangladesh's T20 history that they used such number of bowlers. But it was
planned strategy as Mahmudullah didn't want the Indian batsmen to settle
nicely in the crease.
To bowlers' credit, they bowled according to the plan to make the life
easier for captain. Bangladesh formed the XI, leaving out any left arm
spinners, which was quite unusual since the left arm spinners were considered
Bangladesh's main strength.
But Mahmudullah dared to take this gamble as he knew that Indian batsmen
were quite comfortable to deal with the left-arm spinners. Moreover there was
no Shakib who was banned by ICC just ahead of the series due to breach the
code of conduct as he failed to report corrupt approached to him by the
Shakib's ban that was preceded by players' strike against BCB left the
cricket in tumultuous situation just ahead of the tour. Mahmudullah was given
the captaincy of T20 format in such moment when country's cricket was going
through a worst phase. So it was a challenging task for the captain to
regroup the team and made them focused onto cricket only, shrugging off-the-
field scuffle. Mahmudullah did this in quite astute fashion.
His captaincy was excellent today, said Bangladesh's match-winner
Mushfiqur Rahim, who is also the brother-in-law of Mahmudullah.
He shrewdly used the bowlers. And his change of bowling was tremendous. He
knows well when he should the chance the bowlers and when a spinner will be
But Mahmudullah himself gave all the credit to his colleagues for this
I think it was all based on how we start but the bowlers did a great job,
everyone chipped one, he said after the match.
I think captaincy was made easy because of the guys performing well. I
think Mushfiqur deserves the credit, especially he and Soumya. Naim too
batted well on debut, giving us the start we needed.
Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha (BSS)