All of Bangladesh is rejoicing in the heroism displayed by the country's highest run-scorer to come out to bat at number 11 with a broken wrist just so that the team could reach a total that would give them a fighting chance in their Asia Cup Opener against Sri Lanka in Dubai on Saturday.
But Tamim Iqbal, the man who risked bodily harm for some runs on the board, was the picture of despondency the next day in the Tigers' team hotel.
“I am not enjoying it a bit. I am extremely disappointed,” said Tamim yesterday when asked how he felt about all the hero worship flowing his way in social media and the real world. “I don't think I have been this disappointed, this heartbroken in 10 years of my international career. I had very high hopes when coming to the Asia Cup. But unfortunately, leaving the scene because of injury is very unfortunate.”
Tamim suffered the injury from a Suranga Lakmal bouncer in the second over of the match and was rushed to a hospital for a scan almost immediately. Less than two hours later, it was revealed that he would not take further part in the match. That was, until, he strode out to the shock and demoralisation of the Sri Lankans in the 47th over and played the one ball from Lakmal himself that allowed Mushfiqur Rahim to explode over the next 15 deliveries.
“I have been extremely downcast since last night. Yesterday, after what happened, I had the realisation that I won't play a part in this Asia Cup. So, I did however much was possible for me to do. I thought that if I was destined to play just one more ball in the Asia Cup, I thought 'why not that ball?'. After that there was an important partnership because of that one ball, those are important issues, but at the end of the day I am very heartbroken.”
Tamim risked real danger as even running could prove damaging with a fracture.
“I was not even thinking of those things. For the 15-20 seconds my mindset was on another level. It was killing me that probably it would be the last ball I will face in this Asia Cup. That was a very emotional thing and I very much wanted to do something for the nation.
“I never planned for this. Now people are talking about this a lot, but I thought about none of that. It just came from my heart. I just wanted to do something from my heart.”