This ongoing series against West Indies has been a special one for Bangladesh ODI skipper Mashrafe Bin Mortaza as the beloved cricketer reached a milestone in each of the three matches.
He became the first Bangladesh player to play 200 ODIs in the first game on December 9 at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur. However, 198 of those matches were for Bangladesh as he had played two ODIs for an Asian XI in 2006.
In the next match, on December 11 in Mirpur, when he led Bangladesh out for the 69th time he equalled Habibul Bashar’s record of captaining Bangladesh in the most ODIs. And in today’s series-deciding third ODI at the Sylhet International Stadium, he became the first player to play 200 ODIs for Bangladesh.
All three records are testament to the 35-year-old’s endurance over a 17-year career for Bangladesh. Today’s milestone is perhaps the biggest one for a player who was beset by injuries and thought to have been finished when he was left out of the Bangladesh squad for the 2011 World Cup co-hosted by the country.
He has had seven knee operations but has continued to battle through and remarkably, after becoming captain for the third time in late 2014, has not missed a single match through injury.
He sits atop Bangladesh’s ODI wickets charts, sitting on 255 wickets, 10 ahead of next best Shakib Al Hasan, who has played five matches less.
He is also Bangladesh’s most successful captain, and that too comfortably. Of the 69 matches he has led in before the ongoing one third ODI against West Indies, Bangladesh have won 39, lost 27 and two have ended in no result. Under Bashar, Bangladesh won 29 of the 69 games, losing 40.
Mushfiqur Rahim is next in line to reach the 200-match milestone as he is playing his 198th game today. He will touch the milestone on February 16, 2019 when Bangladesh play the second ODI against New Zealand in Christchurch.