It was a dream come true for the 23-year old Bangladesh fast bowler Mohammad Saifuddin when he got an opportunity to bowl to one of the best white-ball batsmen in the world, Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma in the warm-up match of the 2019 World Cup at Cardiff.
Saifuddin had seen both of these players in action in the last decade and went on to pass his admiration to both of them when he was bowling to them. India lost an early wicket of Shikhar Dhawan who was plumbed in front of the wickets by Mustafizur Rahman.
This brought Virat Kohli to the crease to join forces with Rohit Sharma. Saifuddin told Rohit that he and Virat Kohli are his dream cricketers and now he is bowling to them and doesn’t know what he should do. Rohit then wished ‘Good Luck’ to the fast bowler.
Saifuddin wanted to impress his idol players and wanted to dismiss either one of them. Rohit was then dismissed by Rubel Hossain on 19 runs but Virat Kohli was bowled by Mohammad Saifuddin after he scored 47 from 46 balls.
The fast bowler bowled six overs in the match and scalped one wicket for 27 runs. Subsequently, KL Rahul and MS Dhoni went on to score centuries and took India’s total to a gargantuan 359 runs.
On the other hand, Bangladesh was skittled out for 264 runs and lost the match by 95 runs. Saifuddin added that they can not imagine sledging Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli.
“During our practice match at Cardiff, Rohit Sharma was at the striker’s end with Virat Kohli as the non-striker. I told Rohit, ‘It’s been 10 to 12 years since I’ve been watching you guys on TV, both of you are our dream cricketers. Now I’m bowling to you and I don’t know what to do,’ said Saifuddin in an interview with BDcrictime.
‘We don’t want to sledge them. We have grown up, seeing them play and we can’t imagine sledging them. Cricket is a gentleman’s game and should remain that way. Also, because there’s demerit points, we have to be careful,” the Bangladesh cricketer added.
Meanwhile, there have been multiple instances when India and Bangladesh players have got into the war of words. However, Saifuddin has made his intentions clear that he doesn’t want to engage in verbal battles with his idol players.
On the other hand, Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma will be seen leading Royal Challengers Bangalore and Mumbai Indians respectively in the forthcoming IPL, set to begin in the UAE from September 19.