It was a dream come true for Bangladesh. Going to Champions Trophy semifinals after knocking out Newzealand.
The stunning turnaround was scripted courtesy Bangladesh’s Highest partnership records in ODIs between centurions Shakib and Mahmudullah who added 224 at over a run a ball after their side had been reduced to 33 for 4 chasing 266.
Bangladesh had lost their top order by the 12th over and looked on their way out of the tournament in what was a must-win for both teams. But that was as far as New Zealand’s success goes.
Shakib confirmed his status as the premier allrounder in world cricket with an almost run-a-ball 114; Mahmudullah finished not too far behind, hitting 102 not out off 107 – he brought up his third ODI ton with a hook off Trent Boult.
Mahmudullah had explained his unusual celebration on reaching his century against New Zealand. After bowing down in the direction of Mecca on bringing up his hundred, the Bangladesh right-hander turned the blade around and gestured towards the dressing room, pointing to the back of his bat.
Now he’s revealed that the gesture was aimed at his six-year-old son Raeid, who had signed the bat and told his father to use that particular bat during the ICC Champions Trophy.
“Before leaving for the UK when I was packing my kit my son scribbled something on one of my bats,” Mahmudullah said.”When I asked him what it was he said he was signing the bat for me.”
It was Mahmudullah’s third century in ICC events – following his twin tons at the ICC World Cup in 2015.
Bangladesh will play their first ever Knockouts of ICC meeting India at Birmingham on Thursday.