Mithun, bowlers put Rangpur in the playoffs

Cricket


Rangpur Riders 147 for 6 (Mithun 50*, Archer 2-28) v Khulna Titans 128 for 8 (Klinger 44, Bopara 2-4) by 19 runs
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

Rangpur Riders, led by Mohammad Mithun‘s punchy 50 not out, rallied to beat Khulna Titans by 19 runs and seal their place in the playoffs. Despite the loss, Khulna were also through along with Dhaka Dynamites and Comilla Victorians with four league matches still to be played.

Having been inserted, Rangpur limped to 114 for 6 in eight overs before Mithun’s late blows helped the side plunder 33 off the last two overs. Chasing 148, Khulna sprinted to 60 for 0 by the eighth over but collapsed to be restricted to 128 for 8.

Rangpur kept in check
Rangpur’s powerful top order, boasting Brendon McCullum and Chris Gayle, failed to deliver again. Ziaur Rahman was the first to go, for 8, when he skied Abu Jayed to third man in the third over.

Mccullum flickered briefly – scoring 15 off 11 balls – before holing out to mid-on after being deceived by Shafiul Islam’s offcutter. Chris Gayle, too, couldn’t covert his start: he hit four fours and two sixes – before falling in the 11th over for 38 off 27 balls.

Khulna make more inroads
Jofra Archer then removed Ravi Bopara in the 15th over and when Chamara Kapugedara gave Mahmudullah a simple catch off a Carlos Brathwaite long-hop in the next over, Rangpur were 98 for 5. Archer struck again, getting Nahidul Islam caught at third man, as Khulna reduced Rangpur to 105 for 6 in the 17th over.

Mithun’s late push
Despite wickets falling at the other end, Mithun slowly got into his groove. He enjoyed some good fortune too: he was dropped on 8 and 30, but unleashed big hits in the last two overs of the innings. He hit Shafiul Islam for three sixes in the last over – two over long-on and one over midwicket.

Khulna start positively
Michael Klinger and Nazmul Hossain Shanto ensured Khulna started confidently, taking the side to 48 for 0 at the end of the Powerplay. Klinger was assured both against pace and spin while Shanto – who was reprieved on 0 – moved to 20 before he was trapped lbw.

The implosion
From 60 for 0, Khulna tumbled to 97 for 6 with the Rangpur bowlers sharing the spoils. Afif Hossain pulled Sohag Gazi straight down Mashrafe Mortaza’s throat at deep midwicket. Klinger also gave Mashrafe a catch, at cover, after hitting 44 off 45 balls with four fours and a six. Mahmudullah was then bowled for 6, trying to slog the offspinner Nahidul Islam, before Ziaur Rahman ran out Nicholas Pooran in the same over.

The crucial blow was Brathwaite’s wicket; Isuru Udana had frustrated him with two wide balls in the 16th over before having the West Indies allrounder chase another one wide and edge it to Mithun.

Bopara, Udana provide finishing kick
Archer struck two sixes to raise hopes of a Khulna comeback before falling run out in the 18th over. Bopara then gave away just one runs in the penultimate over while picking up Ariful Haque’s wicket. He finished with 2 for 4 in his two overs, before Udana defended 23 off the last over with his pace and length variations.



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