Early derby ignites DPL
Mohammedan-Abahani face off today in crunch matchStaff Correspondent
Arch-rivals Abahani Limited and Mohammedan Sporting Club face each other in what is just the third round of the ongoing Dhaka Premier League, the newly-included list A competition, at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium today.
Mohammedan are the only unbeaten side so far in the tournament despite not being able to form a strong unit with the newly-introduced players-by-choice transfer system.
‘It’s true that both the teams are not as strong as they used to be in the past but the intensity among the players remained
the same,’ said MSC captain Mashrafee bin Murtaza to reporters at the Mirpur Indoor Stadium on Saturday.
‘The foreign cricketers also understand the importance of the match due to the vibe and intensity that we share in the dressing room regarding this match,’ Mashrafee added.
Mohammedan will be hoping for their foreign recruits – Sri Lankan Test cricketers Tillakaratne Dilshan, Upul Tharanga and Afghanistan all-rounder Mohammad Nabi – to fire on all cylinders.
Nabi has already stamped his mark with a blistering century in the opening game for the Motijheel outfit which rescued the side from a precarious situation before setting up nervy 34-run win over Prime Doleshwar, a side which later defeated Abahani
Mashrafee, however, is emphasising on the team effort rather than depending on any particular individual to keep the winning momentum intact.
‘The team-effort is going to be the key. We batted well in the opening game while bowled well in the next match,’ said Mashrafee.
‘If we can repeat both the performances tomorrow we will be able to emerge victorious.’ he added
‘But along with all these things luck also plays an important part,’ he added, who had made a comeback in competitive cricket with this tournament after recovering from the injury he sustained in the final of the Bangladesh Premier League.
Shahriar Nafees, his counterpart in the opposition camp, knows the value of the match both for his side and for him and did not hesitate to admit it.
‘Of course it’s the biggest match of the competition so far,’ said Shahriar.
‘For us the importance is even bigger as we had already been defeated in our second match,’ said Shahriar.
‘I am also concerned about my own batting as I have yet to make a big score that I believe is waiting just round the corner,’ he added.
Abahani will be depending on pace bowler Al Amin, who had two five-wicket hauls in as many matches, while they had some reward for choosing a young outfit in the transfer window after Under-19 batsman Mosaddek Hossain scored a century that went in vain.
While the two-big shots will be engaged at the SBNS, two minnows Kalabagan Cricket Academy and Khelaghar will be playing at BKSP-3 while Sheikh Jamal Dhanmondi Club and Prime Doleshwar will play at the Fatullah Stadium.
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