The myriad variations of Mujeeb ur Rahman’s finger spin worked wonders this afternoon in the 2020 Big Bash League, as the youngster scalped five wickets for the Brisbane Heat in their game against the Hobart Hurricanes. The 19-year-old spinner from Afghanistan recorded his best ever figures in T20 cricket, ending with 5/15 in his stipulated four overs.
Mujeeb was tasked with bowling immediately after the compulsory batting powerplay, and struck with his very first delivery- a carrom ball that deceived batsman Ben McDermott and knocked him over. The youngster also managed to keep things tight early on, conceding just six runs of his first two overs.
The mystery spinner returned later in the innings, and managed to pick up two of the marquee opposition players in Dawid Malan and Keemo Paul. The southpaw was knocked over by another well disguised carrom ball in the 12th over, while the West Indian all-rounder tamely hit one back to him in the 19th over. Paul’s wicket triggered two more quick scalps, as Mujeeb got the better off both Will Parkar and Scott Boland, to finish with the best ever figures for Big Bash 2020.
Mujeeb’s discipline and mystery proved too much for the opposition batsmen, as they struggled to read him or score runs off him. The 19-year-old picked four of his five wickets by hitting the timber, with Paul being the only ignominy as he was out caught and bowled.
The Afghani spinner, who represented Kings XI Punjab in the 2020 Dream11 Indian Premier League, is now the leading wicket-taker for Brisbane Heat in this season’s Big Bash League, and is only three behind Peter Siddle who tops the charts with 10 wickets. Mujeeb also boasts an impressive economy rate of under six for BBL 2020, proving a thorn in the opposition’s plans on most occasions.
Mujeeb’s batting extravagance
Earlier in the tournament, Mujeeb made the headlines with the bat in hand. Facing his countryman Rashid Khan, the 19-year-old took no prisoners as he dispatched the top-ranked T20I bowler for a four with a nonchalant reverse sweep. Mujeeb managed to score 18 in that game for his franchise against the Adelaide Strikers, and almost gave them a win out of nothing.