BPL 2023: Khulna sign off on high note
Mahmudul Hasan Joy and Habibur Rahman Sohan put on an impressive 41-run partnership off just 16 balls for the fifth wicket, leading Khulna Tigers to their third win in this year’s Bangladesh Premier League (BPL).
Khulna finally tasted victory after a streak of six consecutive losses, and nine defeats in total. Despite not making it to the semifinals, their win enabled them to finish in fifth place, UNB reports.
Mahmudul smashed 64 off 43 balls, featuring five fours and two sixes, while Habibur blasted 30 off just nine deliveries, with three sixes. Despite their impressive batting display, Barishal’s total of 169 was not enough to win the match.
Barishal batted first in this match and posted 169 runs for 8 wickets in 20 overs. South African Dwaine Pretorius was their top scorer, making 48 runs off 29 balls. Anamul Haque Bijoy and Shakib Al Hasan also played well, contributing 28 and 22 runs respectively.
Mohammad Saifuddin, Khulna’s all-rounder, took four wickets for only 20 runs, and Hasan Murad and Nasum Ahmed also added two wickets each.
In response, Khulna made a sluggish start as Sabbir Rahman, a batter going through a lengthy rough patch, only managed to accumulate two runs. However, Andrew Balbirnie and captain Shai Hope were able to minimize the initial damage by combining for 35 runs in the second wicket partnership.
However, the main job was done by the partnership of Mamudul and Habibur.
In the final 12 balls of the match, Khulna needed 26 runs for victory. Habibur stepped up and smashed three sixes and one four to achieve the required score with three balls remaining.
The league phase of this year’s BPL has now concluded and the tournament will resume on February 12th, when Barishal and Rangpur Riders face off in the eliminator match. Later that day, Sylhet Strikers will battle Comilla Victorians in the first qualifier.