Last year’s runner-up Dhaka Dynamites will take on spirited Comilla Victorians in the final battle of Bangladesh Premier League T20 scheduled to be held tomorrow (Friday) at home of cricket Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium at Mirpur.The high voltage final kicks off at 7 pm.
After 45 matches and over a month of action-packed matches, it has come down to the most well balanced sides in the final. It’s time for end of the biggest extravaganza of the country’s domestic competition.
The star studded Dhaka Dynamites started the BPL with a bang but suddenly they lost their way. Dynamites stacked up some of the brilliant T20 players in their squad like ace all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan, Hazratullah Zazai, Sunil Narine, Kieron Pollard, Andre Russell, Rovman Powell, Rony Talukdar and Rubel Hossain.
They booked their spot of final with an overwhelming five-wicket victory over defending champions Rangpur Riders in the second qualifier. Dynamites’ Sunil Narine and Upul Tharanga’s whirlwind starts while chasing fairly low targets have been pivotal to the team’s success in the last couple of matches.
Their all-rounders are key to their fortunes with Shakib, Russell and Narine scoring 298, 295 and 279 runs respectively. Rony Talukdar has been the standout local batsmen for them with several cameos in the tournament but a big one is due from the diminutive batsmen.
Shakib Al Hasan has lived up to his reputation as he leads the bowling charts with 22 scalps to his name while Rubel Hossain isn’t far behind with 21. Sunil Narine and Andre Russell have also played their part to perfection with a number of big players accounted for by the duo and with the emergence of Qazi Onik, there is a sense of stability in the bowling department.
On the other hand, Comilla Victorians stormed into the final as they registered an eight-wicket victory over Rangpur Riders in the first qualifier.
The Victorians’ performance in the tournament is excellent till now. They have stacked up some of the brilliant T20 players in their squad like Tamim Iqbal, Imrul Kayes, Mohammad Saifuddin, Liam Dawson, Shahid Afridi, Thisara Perera, Wahab Riaz, Evin Lewis, and Aamer Yamin.
Evin Lewis was belligerent in the Qualifier 1 against Rangpur as he guided Comilla to the final single handedly. He has had his fair share of troubles with his hamstring but has looked sublime otherwise. The likes of Tamim and Imrul Kayes have also contributed with the former being their highest run-scorer with 326 runs to his name.
The batting depth is exceptional with Mohammad Saifuddin who is billed as an all-rounder, batting at number eight for them. Thisara Perera and Shahid Afridi provide the balance for the side making them worthy finalists.
On the other hand, Mohammad Saifuddin and Mehedi Hasan have come off age and put in incredible performances throughout the tournament with 18 and 13 wickets respectively.
Pakistani dashing all-rounder Shahid Afridi has justified his selection too with 16 wickets and with Thisara Perera and Wahab Riaz’s bowling prowess behind them, they have a fairly well balanced and diverse bowling attack. The onus will be on Sanjit Saha and Mehedi Hasan to fire quickly with three left handers in the top four of the Dhaka side.
Dhaka Dynamites (Expected Playing XI) – Upul Tharanga, Sunil Narine, Rony Talukdar, Shakib Al Hasan (captain), Kieron Pollard, Nurul Hasan (WK), Andre Russell, Shuvagata Hom, Mahmudul Hasan, Rubel Hossain and Qazi Onik.
Comilla Victorians (Expected Playing XI) – Evin Lewis, Tamim Iqbal, Anamul Haque (WK), Shamsur Rahman, Imrul Kayes (captain), Shahid Afridi, Thisara Perera, Mohammad Saifuddin, Mehedi Hasan Rana, Wahab Riaz and Sanjit Saha.