Riders survive Shabbir scareStaff Correspondent
Shabbir Rahman came from nowhere to play an astonishing innings, but Rangpur Riders somehow survived his onslaught to post their second win in the Bangladesh Premier League in Khulna on Wednesday.
Riders thought they did enough to win the match after they reached 174-4 and then reduced Barisal Burners to 48-4, but Brad Hodge and Shabbir nearly had turned the game with some stunning shots.
Kevin O’Brien dismissed Hodge for 58 (from 38 balls), his second fifty in as many matches that ended with Burners still needing 70 runs, which could have easily been the end of the contest as well.
But it did not end until the last over when Burners required 26 to win, seemingly impossible to all but not to a boy who had won Bangladesh a gold medal in the Asian Games from a similar situation two years ago.
Shabbir had struck two sixes in the penultimate over of Asian Games final against Afghanistan to turn the game in Bangladesh’s favour and it looked like he was going to repeat the act at the empty Sheikh Abu Naser Stadium in Khulna.
He took a double in the first ball, sent the next one over the fence and hit a boundary again off the next delivery to take 12 runs from the first three balls of the over, bowled by Abdur Razzak (4-33).
With 14 needed from the final three balls Shabbir had to hit it into the sky again, but this time he could not time it well and Shamsur Rahman took a low catch diving to the front at the mid-wicket boundary to end his 35-ball innings of 69.
The dismissal of Shabbir, who hit four fours and five sixes in all, made the last two balls a formality as Burners ended their 20 overs at 167-8 to concede a seven-run defeat.
Shamsur was adjudged man of the match not just because he took the decisive catches but for his half-century as well that helped Riders build their innings.
Shamsur, who hit 52 from 45 balls in the previous match, got one better to make 66 off 40 balls with nine fours and two sixes and added 70 runs in his opening stand with Imrul Kayes (29 off 27 balls) as Riders made a perfect start to the game.
Nasir Hossain, promoted up the order, was unable to carry on his good form as he made just 17 from 14 balls but Niall O’Brien (27 off 19 balls) and Riders’ new Australian recruit Cameron Borgas (24 off 18 balls) balls played two cameos to give them a commendable total.
comments powered by Disqus