Saifuddin stars as Comilla manage nail-biting victory in BPL

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DHAKA, Feb 1, 2019 (BSS)- Mohammad Saifuddin defended 12 runs in the final over as Comilla Victorians recorded a nail-biting one-run victory over Dhaka Dynamites in the 39th match of Bangladesh Premier League T20 held on Friday at Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium.

Chasing a moderate winning target of 128 runs set by Dhaka Dynamites were restricted at 126 for 9 in 20 overs.

Dhaka Dynamites stared their chase badly as they lost four wickets at 29 runs in the scoreboard. Mahedi Hasan struck early on Dhaka’s innings removing both the Comilla’s openers. One down Rony Talukder fell to Saifuddin while Mahedi put Dhaka in a deep trouble taking the important wicket of Shakib Al Hasan.

Sunil Narine and Kieron Pollard took the responsibility to stop the rot contributing 42 runs for the fifth wicket stand. But Sunil Narine lost his wicket in a crucial moment after scoring 22-run off 24-ball with two fours.

The big hitting West Indies recruit Kieron Pollard looked confident with bat but he eventually fell to Saifuddin after scoring 33-ball off 34-run hitting two boundaries and equal number of over boundaries.

Andre Russell offered some resistance in the end to take Dhaka almost near to the victory target with his priceless unbeaten knock 30-run but it was Saifuddin who did a brilliant job to restrict mighty Russell to deny the Dhaka’s victory in the last ball of the fgame. Russell hit two boundaries and three over boundaries during his 23-ball stay o the crease.

The all-rounder Saifuddin, who was named the player of the match for his impressive bowling performance, was the most successful Comilla’s bowler as he claimed four Dhaka’s wickets giving away 22 runs while Mahedi Hasan took two wickets conceding also 22 runs.

Earlier, pacer Rubel Hossain produced a fierce bowling spells saw Comilla Victorians dismissed at a moderate total of 127 for all from their allotted 20 overs after they were forced to bat first by Dhaka Dynamites.

Comilla suffered early batting jolt as they lost their five top order batsmen at 64 runs in the scoreboard.

Opener Tamim Iqbal top scored with 20-ball off 38 runs but failed get any support from the other end as Comilla lost their wickets in regular intervals. Tamim hit four boundaries and two over boundaries before he fell to Shuvagata Hom.

Later cameo Mahedi Hasan and Wahhab Riaz rescued Comilla from total embracement contributing 31-run for the nine wickets stand to take the team total past hundred runs land mark.

Mahedi Hasan scored 15-ball off 20 runs with the help of two boundaries while Wahab Riaz smashed 12-ball off 16 runs that studded with two sixes.

Rubel Hossain was the pick of Dhaka’s bowlers as he grabbed four Comilla’s wickets conceding 30 runs. He was well supported by Shakib Al Hasan and Sunil Narine who both captured two wickets apiece giving away 23 and 25 runs respectively.

Imrul Kayes, the winning captain of Comilla Victorians said: “It was a phenomenal win today. The bowling was brilliant today. During the innings break I thought we were 15-20 runs short but the way we bowled and fielded was incredible.

Tamim started well but we did not capitalize and we have to work in that department. The batsmen need to put their hands up in the next few matches. Important win this because if we qualify as the number one or two team, we will have two cracks at reaching the final.”

Losing Dhaka Dynamites skipper Shakib Al Hasan said: “Very disappointing we lost the game. It should not have come till the last over. That (the next game) will be a do or die game for us. From now, every game will be a knockout. The five consecutive loses has not been easy. We fielded and bowled really well to restrict a strong Comilla side, but the batting let us down.”

With this win, Comilla Victorians moved top of the table with 16 points from 11 matches while Dhaka Dynamites remained at fifth position with their previous credit of 10 points playing the same number of outings.

Dhaka Dynamites must have to win their last do or die match against Khulna Titans tomorrow (Saturday) to secure the playoff spot.

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