The picture of Mohammad Rizwan receiving treatment in an intensive care unit of a hospital has gone viral, melting the hearts of Pakistani cricket fans and former cricketers alike.
The Pakistani batter top-scored with 67 in Thursday’s T20 World Cup semi-final against Australia despite spending two days in a hospital due to a chest infection, the team doctor confirmed following their five-wicket loss to the Aussies.
Taking to Twitter, legendary fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar lauded the cricketer for his commitment and dedication to the country.
“Can you imagine this guy played for his country today and gave his best. He was in the hospital last two days,” he said.
“Massive respect Mohammad Rizwan.”
Rizwan and veteran Shoaib Malik remained doubtful for the game due to fever.
“Mohammad Rizwan developed a severe chest infection on November 9th after which he was admitted to the hospital. He spent two nights in the ICU recovering,” Pakistan’s team doctor Najeeb Somroo had said.
“He made an incredible recovery and was deemed fit before the match. We can see his great determination and tenacity that shows his spirit of performing for the country. And we can see how he performed today.”
He had added: “The decision regarding his health was made by the whole team management. This was regarding the morale of the whole team and therefore we kept it within the team.”
Rizwan’s 52-ball knock and his key partnerships including a 72-run second-wicket stand with Fakhar Zaman, who made an unbeaten 55, helped Pakistan to 176-4 after being invited to bat first.
Captain Babar Azam, who made 39 to lead the tournament’s batting chart with 303 runs, praised his opening partner’s “exceptional” attitude.
“Definitely he’s a team man. The way he played today, it was exceptional,” Babar had said.
“When I saw him, he was a little bit down, but when I asked him about his health he said, no, I will play. And the way he played today he showed that he’s a team man. And I am very confident about his attitude and his performance.”
Marcus Stoinis (40) and Matthew Wade (41) put on an unbeaten stand of 81 to power Australia into Sunday’s final against New Zealand with five wickets and one over to spare.
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