Hyderabad: Seasoned all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan, whose belligerant half- century helped rescue Bangladesh from a precarious position in the one-off cricket Test against India here on Saturday, is unfazed with the criticism for his aggressive approach in the traditional format.
The 29-year-old Shakib, who fell short of his fifth Test ton by a mere 18 runs, forged a vital 107-run fifth wicket stand with skipper Mushfiqur Rahim (81 not out) to help the visitors crawl back into the match after being reduced to 109/4.
"I played my shots, it was a good wicket and I felt once you get set it would be difficult for the bowlers to get wickets. Would have been nice to get a hundred, but Mushfiqur played well and Mehedi got his first fifty as well," Shakib said after the third day's play, with Bangladesh still trailing by 365 runs in the first innings.
"It's my natural game and I don't change myself (his getting out giving a catch to mid-on). There will be criticism, but I would love to contribute to the team in my way," he added.
Hailing Rahim for his gritty innings, the former Bangladesh skipper said: "Mushfiqur applied himself brilliantly, survived the first 20-30 balls and hit the bad balls away too."
"He likes to get involved in everything. He had to be patient today for he needed this half-century, coming as it did after a long gap. He did perfectly what the team needed today," he added.
Shakib also praised the way India pacer Umesh Yadav bowled at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium wicket which had very little for the bowlers.
"Obviously it wasn't easy, Umesh was bowling especially well, moving the ball both ways. I needed to be positive and use soft hands quite often to counter him," he said.
Shakib reckoned that Sunday's morning session will be crucial for the visitors and could decide the fate of the match.
"I think that session will decide the fate of the match. We have to bat really well," he said.
"For us, it is still a long way in this Test as India is on the front foot right now. We have to really bat well," he added.