Mehidy Hasan kept his cool to bowl a spectacular last over to help Chattogram Challengers clinch a thrilling seven-run victory over Khulna Tigers and progress to the second qualifier in the ongoing Bangabandhu Bangladesh Premier League T20 in Mirpur on Monday.
The off-spinner, who conceded 32 runs in his first three overs, only went for eight runs in the final over of Khulna innings when the batting team required 16 runs to stay alive in the tournament after Chattogram posted a massive 189-5.
Mehidy then bowled a fine yorker to Fletcher in the penultimate delivery for which he went for a single while the former Chattogram skipper, who was stripped of the captaincy after four matches, dismissed Perera in the final delivery to restrict Khulna to 182-5 and complete a nail-biting victory.
Chattogram, which were earlier sent to bat first in the first knockout match of the tournament, were left struggling at 66-4 at halfway stage of their innings despite Kennar Lewis’ making 39 off 32 balls.
The Caribbean wicketkeeper-batsman returned to the side after in-form Will Jacks, who made a complaint about food poisoning, was ruled out of the match just an hour before it got underway.
Chattogram’s other Caribbean recruit Chadwick Walton then struck unbeaten 89 off 44 balls and put up a massive partnership of 115 runs with Mehidy (36) for the fifth wicket to guide their side to a big total.
Pacer Khaled Ahmed finished with 2-40 for the Khulna side. Khulna lost Mahedi Hasan and Soumya Sarkar early in their chase but Fletcher kept them in the match by putting up two crucial stands of 64 and 65 runs respectively with Mushfiqur Rahim (43 off 29 balls) and Yasir Ali (45 off 24 balls).
Walton was named player of the match for his unbeaten knock that included seven fours and as many sixes.