Mohammad Rizwan was hospitalised for two days before the 20-20 World Cup 2021 semi-final match against Australia. The opening batter had a severe chest infection and faced difficulty breathing. He was admitted to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) before making a miraculous recovery in time for the important game.
Dr Najeebullah, the doctor of the Pakistan Cricket team, has now claimed that the 29-year-old was injected with a substance that is normally forbidden for players to use. He also said that the necessary permissions were taken from Cricket's governing body.
"You were unable to breathe, and I had to get permission from the International Cricket Council to inject that medicine to help you recover. Usually, it is prohibited for the athletes but since there was no other option available, we had to take permission from the ICC to inject that medicine," Dr Najeebullah said while speaking to Mohammad Rizwan in an interview.
Rizwan was being treated by Saheer Sainalabdeen, a Specialist Pulmonologist at Medeor Hospital. After Rizwan's miraculous recovery, even the doctor expressed surprise at how rapidly the wicketkeeper recovered. "Rizwan had a strong desire to play for his nation in the crucial knockout match. He was strong, determined and confident. I am astonished at the pace he had recovered. His pain at the time of admission was 10/10. So, we subjected him for a detailed evaluation to diagnose the condition," he said as quoted by CricTracker.
Despite being sick, Rizwan fought bravely against Australia, scoring 67 off 52 balls while opening the batting for Pakistan. However, Pakistan lost by five wickets and Australia went on to win the 20-20 World Cup. In the six matches he played in the competition, Rizwan scored 281 runs at an average of 70.25. Babar Azam, his opening partner and team skipper, also delivered a brilliant performance in the tournament. He scored 303 runs at an average of 60.6 in six matches.
Meanwhile, Mohammad Rizwan is now competing in the English County Cricket Championship for Sussex County. So far, the team has not had a successful season, having lost all five games. They have only two draws this season.