‘There was only one goal, I will not give wicket’

‘There was only one goal, I will not give wicket’

The second match of Afif Hossain’s international career. But he played the first match in February 2016. Afif had to wait a year and a half to get another match. In that match against Zimbabwe in 2019, T20 was 18 overs, batting for 145 runs, Bangladesh lost 6 wickets for 60 runs.

Afif dropped to number eight. When he was dismissed for 52 off 27 balls in the 18th over, the victory was almost certain for Bangladesh. Afif got another chance and used it brilliantly.

Afif has been a regular in T20 since that match. However, even though he showed a glimpse of ‘Second Opportunity’ in the edition, he could not show it in ODIs after his debut in 2020. Today in Chittagong, Afif has another opportunity to prove his worth. Afif used it.

Speaking at a press conference after the match, Afif said, “It is a matter of pride to play a good game for the country. So try to be good all the time. There is a time, there is no time. So since today was a big opportunity, such a big opportunity is not available. I got a big opportunity, I wanted to use it. ‘

Afif has batted coldly against the Afghan spinners
Afif has batted coldly against the Afghan spinnersPhoto: Prothom Alo
After losing 6 wickets for 45 runs in a chase of 215 runs, there is an opportunity to do something, but the task is not easy. History is to be made. Afif made history with Mehdi Hasan Miraj. However, while batting, they didn’t think much, they wanted to keep everything ‘simple’, ‘We didn’t talk about winning the match in the whole game. All we said was that we would not give up, we would try in the end. ‘

On the way to ‘try till the end’, Afif has surpassed the previous highest score and got the first half century of his ODI career.

The goal is not so big in proportion to the ball, so they were able to plan the game ‘Dekhesune’, ‘From the beginning, our goal was the same that we will not give wickets, runs will come. There is nothing to do if it is not good. Towards the end the game was “Ball to Ball”. The plan was to just play the normal game. ‘

Afif after picking up half a century
Afif after picking up half a centuryPhoto: Prothom Alo
Sometimes the game was stopped for a while due to floodlight error, but Afif-Miraj did not fall into rhythm. Afif-Miraj will be able to win even from such a situation, Bangladesh captain Tamim Iqbal did not think so at the beginning.

But once faith spread in the dressing room, the message went to the affidavit, ‘There was a message from the dressing room that we should go the way we were going. Without the wicket, I keep the wicket in hand. If we are both on the wicket, it is possible to win the match.