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October 11, 2011
Mushfiqur Rahim, who sealed Bangladesh's victory over West Indies on Tuesday with a six over midwicket, said it was a calculated shot he played to finish the game.
"I was targeting the smaller side of the ground, and I was confident that even a mis-hit could travel for six," he said.
During Bangladesh's recent tour of Zimbabwe, Mushfiqur was in a similar position in the third ODI. Bangladesh needed eight to win off the last over with one wicket in hand, and Mushfiqur, batting on 99, hit a couple of the first ball and holed out off the next attempting a six. Here, he said, he was not worried about repeating the mistake.
"In Harare, as we only had one wicket left, I knew that even if I took a single we would have lost the match; in other words it was all left up to me. Here, since we had three wickets left, I knew that even if I mis-hit the shot and we ran one or two there would still be a chance to win."
The match was Mushfiqur's first as captain of Bangladesh and he was glad everything went to plan. "Everyone wants the first match [of their stint in charge] to be memorable, and I couldn't have asked for more. We won the toss, it was the plan to bowl first because dew might have been a factor and our bowling is spin-reliant. We saved 10-12 runs in the field and made a concerted effort to restrict them as much as possible."
With Bangladesh 93 for 6 in the 16th over, chasing 133, West Indies appeared to have the edge, but Mushfiqur found an able partner in debutant Nasir Hossain. At that point, Mushfiqur said, he was looking to play out 20 overs. "I believed that if Nasir and I stayed till the last over, even if we needed 10 or 15 runs [in the 20th], we would win.
"We got some runs in the second-last over [14 off Carlos Brathwaite], which was a bonus for us. In the last over, I had the confidence that if I got the ball in my zone then I could hit it for a four or six. Fortunately, that is what happened."
The Bangladesh bowlers did well to restrict West Indies, he said. "I think we bowled fantastically well to restrict West Indies to 132. It was not a difficult total [to chase]. Rubel [Hossain] got hit for two sixes, but these things can happen in the Powerplays. What I liked was how he responded to the responsibility placed on him and came back well."
Darren Sammy, West Indies' captain, said his side had made too many errors. "We could have scored more runs, and we could have stopped more balls in the field," Sammy said. "In the end we made more mistakes than they did.
"We knew it was going to be an interesting series. They held their nerve better than we did. We never took them for granted."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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