I had to continue at the crease as mum was watching – Hashmatullah

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Afghanistan’s Hashmatullah Shahidi lies on the ground after being struck by the ball (Martin Rickett/PA)

Afghanistan batsman Hashmatullah Shahidi revealed he got back up after being floored by a Mark Wood bouncer in a bid to stop his mother worrying about him.

Hashmatullah was on 24 when he turned his back on a 92mph delivery from the England paceman, hitting the turf immediately after impact.

It looked certain that he would be forced to retire hurt but he was on his feet surprisingly quickly. The 24-year-old appeared to suggest that medical staff advised him to leave the field but he opted to stay in place and ended up top-scoring for his side with 76 in an otherwise one-sided 150-run defeat.

Hashmatullah Shahidi lies on the ground at Old Trafford
Hashmatullah lies on the ground at Old Trafford (Tim Goode/PA)

The incident is likely to attract concern from those who feel cricket can be too lax in its approach to concussion and head injuries, but Hashmatullah gave an emotive account of his decision to continue at the crease.

“I got up early because of my mum,” he said.

“One of the reasons I got up so quickly is because my mum is always thinking of me. I lost my father last year so I didn’t want her to hurt. My whole family was watching, even my big brother was here in the ground watching. I didn’t want them to be worried for me.”

Those are admirable sentiments from a plucky cricketer, but the remainder of his account offered reason for concern.

“The ICC doctors came to me, and our physios, and my helmet was broken in the middle,” he recalled.

“They just told me just, ‘let’s go’. I told them I can’t leave my team-mate at that moment. My team needed me, I carried on.

“After the match I went to the ICC doctor and talked to them. They took care of me and said it will be fine, inshallah.”

A team official, Naveed Sayeh, confirmed had acted against advice in continuing his innings.

Hashmatullah is assessed by medical staff after being struck by the ball
Hashmatullah is assessed by medical staff after being struck by the ball (Tim Goode/PA)

He said: “The doctors told him, ‘please come off’ and to leave the ground. He told them, ‘no, I’m now OK so I’ll continue my batting’.”

Afghanistan captain Gulbadin Naib earlier pleaded ignorance when asked about a reported incident at a Manchester restaurant the night before the game.

A confrontation is alleged to have taken place with a member of the public at a curry house, but had no information to offer.

Gulbadin Naib, left, had no knowledge of an altercation in a Manchester restaurant
Gulbadin Naib, left, had no knowledge of an altercation in a Manchester restaurant (Martin Rickett/PA)

“No, I haven’t, so you can ask my security officer. I didn’t know anything about him, about them,” he said.

“It’s not a big issue for the team, for me.”

A statement released by Greater Manchester Police read: “Shortly after 11.15pm on Monday 17 June 2019, police were called to reports of an altercation at a premises on Liverpool Road in Manchester.

“Officers attended the scene. No one was injured and no arrests have been made. Enquiries are ongoing.”

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