The team hotel was a hub of activity on Monday morning. The jubilant Bangladeshi press corps were hanging about in the lobby trying to get hold of the players. Most of whom were asleep, having first celebrated their win all night and then taken their ‘sehri’ very early in the morning. Only one player was up, Mustafizur Rahman. Who would get sleep after taking a record 11 wickets in their first two ODIs?
Rahman was posing for a photoshoot. When he was growing up, Rahman would have posters of his favorite fast bowlers in his room. He would stand and just stare at them for long periods — long enough for his parents to suspect if something was wrong with the kid. On Monday, he was getting clicked for perhaps those photos that young Bangladeshi kids would stare at.
The local media, meanwhile, got hold of Heath Streak for their story of the day. The former fast bowler spoke glowingly about Rahman, Taksin Ahmed and Rubel Hossain. He insisted the MS Dhoni’s career wasn’t finished yet, and said that the India series win stood right up there when it comes to his achievements as a coach.
After he excused himself, Chandika Hathurusingha came out in the lobby to step out of the hotel. He was chased all the way to his car.
The local press dispersed soon after. The place suddenly appeared quiet, with now mostly executive types sitting in the lounge areas, having conversations in whispers over tea. It was then that Ravichandran Ashwin stepped out with the physio Nitin Patel and headed for practice at Sher-e-Bangla stadium. Ajinkya Rahane followed soon after, with Sanjay Bangar in tow, and headed to the indoor nets at the same place. It was an optional practice session.
But after the drop, Rahane, one of the most hard working players in the team, wasn’t going to leave anything to chance. He has no other option.