SHAKIB stands alone
The moment Shakib Al Hasan trapped Afghanistan opener Shabir Noori in front off the third ball of the eighth over yesterday, the left-armer achieved a unique feat.
The 29-year-old, who recently completed a decade in international cricket, became the country's highest wicket-taker in all three formats of the game.
With 65 wickets in T20Is and 147 wickets in Tests, Shakib was the highest wicket-taker in these two formats prior to the Afghanistan series. However, after he dismissed Noori yesterday, he took his ODI tally to 207 wickets and went level with Abdur Razzak. He then went ahead of the veteran left-arm bowler when he got rid of Rahmat Shah.
At this point in time there is no other cricketer in the world who leads their nation's wickets column in each of the three formats. It is quite a big achievement. But ask Shakib for a reaction, and he will give you an answer typical of him and his attitude.
"It feels good to be the highest wicket-taker in all the three formats, but it would have been better if I had been the highest run-getter in all three formats as well. This is no doubt a good achievement, but to lead with both the bat and the ball would have been great," he said when asked about the feat after the match.
It was an answer which clearly depicted his hunger for success.
"The thing is that everyone has been doing so well at the top lately that I haven't been getting chances to bat. All I can do is score 30s and 40s these days," he added with a smile.
But of course, the above statement was something that Shakib said with positive intent. After all, at the end of the day, the team's achievement is more important to the left-armer.
"Mushfiqur[Rahim] bhai, Tamim [Iqbal] and I have been scoring plenty of runs for the team. Hopefully three more cricketers will join us. Ultimately someone will be first, second or third. That's not something I am concerned or worried about. What is important for us is to see how much we can contribute to the team," said Shakib.
The left-armer, who hit a vital 40-ball 48 towards the end of the first innings and also scalped a crucial two-wicket haul, was awarded the player of the match award yesterday.
With a number of players performing their roles to perfection in the national team, the player of the match award has not come Shakib's way as often it as it once used to.
So when asked how it felt to be awarded the player of the match, Shakib's response was a cheeky one.
"Yeah… Mustafizur is not there in the team. I got one today," he smiled.
"Any achievement feels good. But the main job is to contribute. No one becomes the player of the match just by saying that you have to try to win the award. What you need to do is contribute to the team. At the end of the day, if you contribute the most, you will win the player of the match award," he concluded.