Was unsure of my ability to tackle Zaheer Khan’s pace during 2007 World Cup: Tamim Iqbal

Tamim Iqbal, the newly-appointed Bangladesh ODI skipper, has revealed that he was unsure whether he would be able to handle former Indian bowler Zaheer Khan’s pace during the clash between the two sides at the 2007 ICC World Cup.

The 31-year-old also said that he was too busy watching the likes of Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid, and Sourav Ganguly throughout that match of the showpiece event.

In the 2007 World Cup, Bangladesh had managed to upset India in the group-stage match, and Iqbal was the key force in the match as he played a knock of 51 runs off just 53 balls as a 17-year-old.

“The moment I was playing the World Cup 2007 match against India, I was too busy watching Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid and Sourav Ganguly. I was just watching them. I was too happy to be playing in the presence of these legends,” Iqbal told Sanjay Manjrekar in a videocast hosted by ESPNCricinfo.

“When they scored 190, we knew we had a chance. I went to bat and I faced Zaheer Khan. I thought to myself will I be able to face a bowler who bowls at 140 kph; the first ball he bowled, somehow I managed to defend that; next ball I smashed for four and from there I got some confidence,” he added.

In the 2007 World Cup match, India was bundled out for just 191 runs and Bangladesh managed to chase down the total with nine balls to spare.

“I was just too happy playing against my heroes; win against India in the 2007 World Cup was a great thing for Bangladesh cricket; it was great for both players and fans, the win gave hope to our people that our team can do something,” Iqbal said.

India had a horrible run in the 2007 World Cup as the side was knocked out in the group-stage only after losing matches against Bangladesh and Sri Lanka.

Iqbal has so far played 60 Tests, 207 ODIs and 78 T20Is for Bangladesh, managing to score 13,365 runs across all formats.He was appointed the skipper of Bangladesh ODI side earlier this year as Mashrafe Mortaza stepped down from the role.