Bowling in the right areas, and consistently at that, earned him success, said Mehidy Hasan Miraz after his fine bowling performance that helped Bangladesh seal a 2-0 finish to the Test series against the Windies in Dhaka.
Mehidy’s figures of 12 for 117, his second 10-wicket haul in Tests, and also the best bowling figures by a Bangladeshi, helped the hosts secure their first innings victory on Sunday (December 2).
“I am happy that I could bowl in good areas,” Mehidy said after the match. “If I could not bowl in good areas I wouldn’t have got the wickets and it wouldn’t have served the purpose of the team.”
“I have played against him [Hetmyer] for a long time since the Under-19 World Cup. So I am pretty aware how he plays. I am happy that my plan against him worked,” said Mehidy before adding that the presence of four spinners in the Bangladesh line-up allowed them to sustain the pressure for long periods. “Sometimes we get tired so it is better to have bowlers who can bowl in partnership. We had a good communication between us.”
The youngster expressed the joy without being obscure; said, “After a long time I got the award, and I’m really happy.”
“My teammates have been really supportive. Our bowlers did really well – especially Taijul and Shakib. Nayeem supported really well to. At the end of the day we did very well and we have been successful,” Miraz said.
The 21 year all-rounder reckoned the success had been ease by the batting performance of the team in the first innings. He said,
“I love batting too, and our batsmen set the tone with a 500+ score, so that made the job easier for the bowlers.”
Mehidy Hasan had a Test fifer even before turning 19. Born in Khulna, his parents wanted him to excel in studies. But, Mehidy had different ideas and chose cricket over academics. His talent was first discovered by former Bangladeshi off-spinner Sheikh Salahuddin. Mehidy captained Bangladesh in the Under-19 World Cup in 2014 at the age of 16 and made his first-class debut for Khulna against Rajshahi Division in February 2015.
It was in 2016, when Mehidy Hasan grabbed headlines. It started with the U-19 World Cup in Bangladesh, where he led his country for the second time. His all-round performances helped his team finish third and he was named the player of the tournament. Soon, he had a tremendous first-class season. He finished the season with 30 wickets at an average of 16.43. These performances earned him a maiden international call-up for the two-match Test series against Alastair Cook’s England.
Mehidy made his Test debut in October 2016 at Chittagong. His first spell with the new ball lasted ten overs that accounted for two wickets. Being one day old in the Test arena, he had a five-wicket haul against his name and he eventually finished with figures of 6/80. Bangladesh lost that Test by a close margin of 22 runs, but that had no effect on the youngster. He bettered his performance by notching up two more six-wicket hauls in the second Test at Dhaka which helped Bangladesh beat England for the very first time in the longest format. He was named the Man of the Match as well as the Man of the Series.
In the 2016 edition of the Bangladesh Premier League, he represented Rajshahi Kings who finished runners-up. Away from home, in alien conditions in New Zealand, Mehidy managed to take just four wickets in two Tests. In the one-off Test at Hyderabad against India, he registered his maiden Test fifty against the likes of Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja.
Still early days in Mehidy’s career and he can only get better with time. He has shown a penchant for red-ball cricket more than the shorter forms. At least that’s what the numbers say although the sample size is too small to judge him yet. One department where Mehidy will want to improve is his batting. He has made a few contributions down the order but those who know him well will tell you that his batting is as good as his bowling.