I was in tears laughing, Australia skipper Mitchell Marsh sees the funny side of Gulbadin Naib’s theatrics

I was in tears laughing, Australia skipper Mitchell Marsh sees the funny side of Gulbadin Naib’s theatrics


Gros Islet (St Lucia), Jun 26: Australia captain Mitchell Marsh saw the funny side of Afghanistan all-rounder Gulbadin Naib’s theatrical complaining of cramps in a T20 World Cup match against Bangladesh, terming it as “one of the funniest things” he has ever seen on a cricket field.


Naib, who was fielding in the slip, fell on his back while clutching his thighs during the 12th over, just after coach Jonathan Trott signalled to slow down the proceedings as rain was imminent with Afghanistan ahead in the proceedings in the must-win Super Eights game.


“I was almost in tears laughing and at the end of the day it had no bearing on the game. So, we can laugh about it now – but, gee, it was funny. It was outstanding,” Marsh told cricket.com.au.


Bangladesh were chasing 115 for a win then, and fell behind the DLS par score of 83 at the end of the 12th over at 81 for seven.


However, Naib later bowled two overs and participated with vigour in Afghanistan’s victory celebrations without showing any hint of ‘cramps.’


The ICC’s playing conditions stipulate that a player can get up to two-match ban for “deliberate or repetitive” time wasting tactics, but that Naib might just escape with a first and final warning by the match referee.


With the win, Afghanistan knocked Australia out of the T20 World Cup, and Marsh said the 2021 champions have only themselves to blame for the exit.


“We watched it (the match) as a group. It was obviously a pretty amazing game, wasn’t it? A lot of twists and turns.


“Obviously, you want to keep playing this tournament and that was our only way of doing it. But there’s also the element that it was completely out of our control and we only had ourselves to blame for that,” said Marsh.


The all-rounder said the team was dejected after the fall of the final Bangladesh wicket.


Pacer Naveen-ul-Haq trapped Mustafizur Rahman in front of the wicket to signal a famous win for the Afghans.


“We were all flat (when the final wicket fell). We were desperate to continue on in the tournament. But fair play to Afghanistan – they beat us and they beat Bangladesh and they deserve to be in the semifinals,” added Marsh.


Afghanistan will face South Africa in the first semifinal of the T20 World Cup at Trinidad on Thursday.–(PTI)

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