After facing the destruction of the one and only AB De Villiers, Bangladesh captain Mashrafe Bin Mortaza praised the Portea batsman. Mashrafe admitted that his bowlers were at times clueless against the almighty hitting of De Villiers. He also regretted the two early missed chances from his countrymen when AB was on 1 & 2 respectively. The veteran batsman took to the field for his very first ODI match since his ICC Champions’ Trophy clash against India earlier this year. AB’s destruction helped South Africa to take an unassailable 2-0 lead in the 3-match ODI series as Bangladesh were bowled out for 249 in reply to the Proteas’ mammoth 353 for 6.
Mortaza said his players did have the confidence to chase the target but once again the problem of losing wickets at regular intervals crippled their run chase. He said, “It was a do or die match for us and we started the chase with a positive intent. Unfortunately Tamim got out but although Mushfiq [Mushfiqur Rahim] and Imrul [Kayes] batted well [it was not enough. If they could take us to somewhere when we needed to chase 100 runs in last 10 overs with seven or eight wickets in hand, we could have made an attempt. This happens quite often in this format as well as in the Twenty20s. Imran Tahir picked two wickets pretty quickly and it was a big blow for us in the middle.
Mortaza, also regretted missing chances to remove AB early in his innings. He was on hand to praise the batsman by saying every team dreams of having an AB De Villiers in their ranks. A disappointed Mashrafe added, “If we could have got the wicket of AB, then it could have been a different story. AB [has] played these type of innings a few times in his career now. As a bowler anything less than 100%, he is going to pounce on you. If we could have removed him early, we may as well have won the game. If he got out at 100, we could have still been in the game. The next 76 runs made a lot of difference. He can destroy any team on his day. There were a few chances here and there but it wasn’t our day. Hopefully we will bounce back”.
The two teams will lock horns for the last time in the ODI series come Sunday (October 22nd) in East London before the two T-20s in October 26th & 29th respectively.