July 26, 1971, Dhaka
Also Known As
Right hand bat
Right arm medium
Khaled Mahmud, Bangladesh's third Test captain, didn't have a better record than the first two, but history would have remembered him so differently had the result of the 2003 Multan Test not been a one-wicket loss to Pakistan. It was the game that defined Mahmud, a gritty batsman who worked with very little natural talent, a big-hearted bowler who could surprise the batsman, and a captain who always intended to lead by example. He didn't score many in that career-defining game, but Mahmud picked up seven of his 13 Test wickets in that Test, including four in the first innings, and bowled his body into the ground in the closing stages of the second innings. It was a game that Bangladesh would have won had the captain, or perhaps the team itself, had more Test caps and first-class matches under its belt.
Hailing from a family where both elder brothers played club cricket, the man nicknamed Sujon was a taped-tennis hit in Siddeshwari, a residential neighbourhood in Dhaka. A terror in the field, many players have a tale to tell while playing with Mahmud over the years. He was witty as well as a man who never backed down from a fight, often using sledging as a means to upset batsmen.
Despite the Multan game, Mahmud has had a career with some sweet memories. Older than many of the seniors of the day, he was a late starter for Bangladesh despite being a domestic force in the 1990s. He made his ODI debut with a 47 against India on a cold morning in 1998 but had to wait three more years for the cherished Test debut. He was the Man-of-the-Match in the 1999 World Cup group stage win over Pakistan, hailed as one of the biggest upsets in world cricket. His military-medium stung Inzamamul Haque and Co in Northampton, but it was always his efforts with the bat that would keep him in the team.
Two years after making his Test debut, he took over from Khaled Mashud and steadied the ship as the high-profile Dav Whatmore became coach. He seldom saw eye-to-eye with the Australian, but to his credit, Whatmore never aired his views in public, though he did keep Mahmud away from Test cricket from November 2003. Mahmud continued to play ODIs under Habibul Bashar before tearfully retiring in 2006 after playing the first game of the series against Sri Lanka.
He has taken to coaching like a fish to water, and was even briefly with the national side as an assistant to Jamie Siddons in 2009-10.
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