Bangladesh ODI captain Mashrafe Bin Mortaza will reach new heights when he steps onto the pitch today against West Indies at the Sylhet International Cricket Stadium. He will be captaining the Tigers in the format for the 70th time, the most by any Bangladeshi player and surpassing Habibul Bashar who led the side 69 times.
When Mashrafe takes the field today, marking this milestone with a victory should be the only thing swirling in his mind. Mashrafe, who battled with injury issues throughout his career, always prioritized playing for the team more than the captaincy.
“When I started it was not with a lot of hope. Because I had gotten the captaincy before and gotten injured within 4-5 games and left for a long time. The next time, the outlook was the same -- captaincy was never an issue with me; more important was playing for Bangladesh,” he said during a press conference in Sylhet yesterday.
After a short stint as skipper in 2010, he was again given the helm in 2014. According to the skipper, he never sketched out a particular goal for himself after that.
“When I got it in 2014 I did not really think about my future, and even as a player I did not set anything for myself. I just thought that let it go as far as it can.
“It has now been four years and it is a matter of pride for me and my family that I have captained Bangladesh for so long. And if, InshAllah, I can take the field tomorrow I will have led the country in the most ODIs,” he concluded.
Mashrafe, who has the highest win percentage as a captain, will surely be looking to lead the Tigers to a victory today and clinch the series because without a win, today will be just another number added to his legacy.