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Mashrafe Mortaza feels Mustafizur Rahman is a cut above the rest

Ram Kumar
944   //    23 Feb 2016, 23:38 IST
Mustafizur Rahman
Mustafizur Rahman has had a promising start to his international career

Bangladesh captain Mashrafe Mortaza has warned the Indian batting lineup that their preparation against Mustafizur Rahman may not pay dividends. Hindustan Times reported the medium-pacer talking about his team’s chances on the eve of their clash against India in the Asia Cup.

While conceding that the Indian batting unit was one of the best in the world, Mashrafe has backed Mustafizur to replicate his successful showing against them at home during last year. He claimed that the 20-year old ‘can do things which others in his team can’t’.

Mortaza elaborated, “Mustafiz has many variations of his slow cutters. It is only important as to how confident he is about the execution part. He does he not focus on opposition batsmen and only concentrates on what he knows best. You can do your homework against Mustafiz but it might not work.”

After he arrived on to the stage with a bang, there were several doubts on whether the thin seamer could handle all the sudden adulation thrust upon him. However, his skipper placed immense trust on the young man to blossom into a complete bowler.

Mortaza enthused, “Mustafiz doesn’t think about all things like what all is said about him. So, as a captain, it is easier for me to guide a boy who has no inclination towards all these external factors. And since he does not really care, it does not put him under any sort of pressure. I think Mustafiz is diametrically opposite of what people perceive him to be as he has got so much success so early in his career. What he does is to go out there and play and come back.”

The 32-year old has overseen a dramatic transition of the Bangladesh ODI team by infusing optimism and a never say die attitude in his squad. But, Mortaza was pragmatic in his assessment in that there were still major improvements needed in their T20 game.

He asserted, “It is a different format and Mustafizur alone cannot win us matches. The others will also have to chip in. Our T20 record has not been that great but that does not mean we can’t improve. This tournament is our chance to prepare for the big event (World T20). We should not be afraid of failures.”

Bangladesh kick start the Asia Cup tomorrow with an encounter against India in Mirpur.

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Ram Kumar
Someone who views sport as a metaphor for life.
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