Rangpur Rangers picked up their fourth win of the ongoing BBPL, defeating Sylhet Sixers by 38 runs. Rangpur were helped on their way to a big total by skipper Shane Watson, who hammered 68 off 36 balls with the help of six fours and five sixes as they scored 199 for five before the bowlers restricted Sylhet to 161 all out.
Sherfane Rutherford hit a 38-ball 60 to raise hope for Sylhet but his calamitous departure, when he failed to place his bat when taking a run and was consequently run-out, left Sylhet in despair. Rangpur’s Mustafizur Rahman bagged two wickets for 18 runs to take the top spot in the BBPL’s wicket takers’ list with 16 wickets.
Sylhet chose to field at the toss and were put under pressure by a 77-run opening stand between Mohammad Naim and Watson. The left-handed Naim’s 33-ball 42 continued a consistent run this season, but the main thrust of Rangpur’s innings came from captain Watson, who had scored just 15 runs in his first four matches.
Watson started the carnage in the fifth over from off-spinner Nayeem Hasan, hammering two sixes and two fours. Naim’s dismissal, caught off Monir Hossain in the ninth over, opened the door for another big partnership as Cameron Delport added 61 runs with Watson in just 35 balls.
Watson reached his 50 off 31 balls in the 13th over by hitting Sherfane Rutherford for a four and a six. He followed that up with two more sixes and a four off Shohag Gazi in the next over. Then, against the run of play, Sylhet pacer Ebadot Hossain came in and had Delport caught in the deep and in the very next ball, for the second time in as many matches, bowled Watson with an inch-perfect yorker and reducing Rangpur to 138 for three. Watson’s departure did dent the momentum, but cameos from Mohammad Nabi (23 off 17) and Fazle Mahmud (16 off eight) lifted Rangpur to an above-par total.
In the day’s first match, Dhaka Platoon rode on a four-for from young pacer Hasan Mahmud to defeat Khulna Tigers by 12 runs and take top spot in the seven-team table. Khulna skipper hit a fantastic 33-ball 64 but it turned out to be in vain as they ended on 160 for eight, chasing Dhaka’s 172 for four.