Mahedi Hasan demonstrated a brilliant all-round performance to help Rangpur Riders clinch their fifth win in the ongoing Bangladesh Premier League 2023 after they beat Dhaka Dominators by five wickets during their eighth match at the Sylhet International Cricket Stadium on Monday.
Mahedi struck a blistering knock of 72 off 43 balls with six fours and five sixes – his first fifty in the ongoing BPL – to guide Rangpur to chase down a target of 145 runs in the 19th over to complete their third successive victory in the ongoing meet.
Dhaka’s Afghan recruit Usman Ghani struck an unbeaten 73 off 55 balls with seven fours and three sixes while skipper Nasir Hossain made 29 runs.
With this win, Rangpur remained in fourth place with 10 points while Dhaka, which could earn only four points from nine games after their seventh defeat, came closer to facing the exit door from the tournament.
Dhaka made a terrible start in the game as they lost three early wickets within the powerplay to get reduced to 28-3 before Usman and Mohammad Ghani shared a 41-run stand for the fourth wicket to bring some respite in their innings.
Rangpur’s left-arm Rakibul Hasan removed Mithun (14) to break the partnership but Usman continued his good work with the bat and completed his first fifty in the ongoing BPL.
The 26-year-old batsman also added 55 runs with Nasir for the fifth wicket to take their score over the 120-run mark before the partnership was dismissed through a run-out and the latter had to go back to the dressing room.
“The surface was good for batting and 180-190 would have been a good score. We didn’t get partnerships at the top of the order and hence ended with a below-par 144. The bowlers tried their best but the wicket was conducive for batting,” Nasir said after the match.
Rangpur lost opener Mohammad Naim (0) in the second over by Salman Irshad (2-36) but opener Rony Talkudar and Mahedi, who was promoted to number three in the match, shared a 63-run stand for the second wicket and steadied their innings.
The partnership was broken by Amir Hamza after he removed Rony (29) but Mahedi’s fiery batting performance kept Rangpur very much in the game.
When Mahedi was dismissed in the 17th over, Rangpur needed 22 runs off 21 balls and Mohammad Nawaz (17 not out) and Omarzai (12 not out) finished the task with ease as they reached 146-5 with six balls to spare.
Mahedi was named player of the match for his all-round performance.
“It was nice to get to fifty but I should have been there to finish the game. I got good support from my senior players. I am enjoying both batting and bowling in this tournament. The plan was to bowl dot balls and you would get the wickets because of the pressure,” Mahedi said after the game.