Clinical Titans register a memorable win
By Krunal, MyCricketHighlights Cricket Writer
11th Match: Chittagong Vikings vs Khulna Titans at Shere Bangla National Stadium, Dhaka, Nov 12 - 2017, Cricket highlights
The match between Chittagong Vikings and Khulna Titans saw one of the best batting performances from the Titans. It didn’t start all well for them as they lost their top three for just 29 runs on the board. Sunzamul Islam and Dilshan Munaweera were the pick of the bowlers for the Vikings, as the duo shared three wickets and gave away just 16 runs in the 4 overs between them.
It was only after the powerplay ended, runs started to come more freely for Khulna Titans. Mahmudullah and Rilee Rossouw added 39 runs in 32 balls, before the latter was dismissed by Taskin Ahmed. The wicket helped Vikings to once again slow down the proceedings, albeit only for a brief while. Mahmudullah, after taking his time initially and scoring a run-a-ball 25, decided to play a few big shots. He connected a couple of one, which went all the way into the stands, and helped his team to build the momentum going into the last 5 overs.
At the end of 15 overs, the Titans’ score read a sorry 101 for 4. The captain and coach would have been a bunch of happy guys if they would have finished with 150 on board. But a certain Ariful Haque and his partner in crime, Carlos Brathwaite, had different plans. The wicket of Mahmudullah worked as a blessing in disguise for Khulna as it brought the destructive Brathwaite to the crease. The brawny West Indian wasted very little time to get off the mark as he smashed his second ball for six over long-on.
It was the beginning of the carnage that the Dhaka crowd were about to witness. The next three overs saw the ball flying all over the Shere Bangla stadium as both Brathwaite and Ariful Haque went berserk. The 18th over was the most expensive of the lot as Haque clobbered Tanbir Hyder for 3 massive sixes and a boundary to score 24 runs.
Subhasis Roy got Brathwaite (30) out in the penultimate over, but not before conceding 12 runs. The wicket, however, brought no respite for the Vikings as the new batsman, in Jofra Chioke Archer, smashed 11 runs off 4 balls to help his team finish with a competitive total of 170.
During the run-chase, Chittagong Vikings were off to a horrible start as they lost both their openers in the very first over. Abu Jayed was the wrecker-in-chief for Khulna Titans as he picked up both the wickets. He was not done yet and in his second over, he also got rid of Dilshan Munaweera. To make matters worse for the batting side, Carlos Brathwaite gave them another big blow by picking up the wicket of Anamul Haque. As a result, they were reduced to 38 for 4 in 5 overs.
After the early collapse, Chittagong’s innings was revived by Sikandar Raza and captain Misbah-ul-Haq, who added 59 runs for the fifth-wicket partnership. Raza was the aggressor between the two and time and again, managed to find a boundary. The partnership was working really well for the Vikings, who now needed 74 to get from 42 balls – very much possible with 6 wickets in hand. But then came the decisive blow from Shafiul Islam, who cleaned up Sikandar Raza (37), thereby giving his team an upper hand going into the final 6 overs.
At the end of 15 overs, Vikings score was similar to Titans. In fact, 4 runs more than what the Titans had scored. But to win the match, they needed somebody to play in a similar fashion to Ariful Haque and Carlos Brathwaite. That didn’t happen. Abu Jayed was brought back into the attack and the right-arm medium pacer continued to add wickets in front of his name. This time he got the opposition’s skipper out, thereby picking up a four-wicket haul.
The next couple of overs went for 28 runs as Luis Reece struck a few lusty blows. But despite that, the Vikings still needed 34 runs for victory off the last 2 overs. Their hopes of pulling off a miraculous win were dashed when Reece was cleaned up by Jofra Chioke Archer at the start of the penultimate over. This was the final nail in the coffin as far as Khulna Titans were concerned. There was no way that the tailenders could score the required 25 runs off the last over. Shafiul Islam wasn’t going to allow that to happen at any cost. He gave away just 6 runs and sealed an 18-run win for his team.