The home team might have disappointed the fans in the opening game, but at least the local boy gave some cause for celebration as Tamim Iqbal's Duronto Rajshahi scored a four run victory over Barisal Burners in a high-scoring BPL clash at the MA Aziz Stadium last night.
In getting their second win in five games, Rajshahi put their opponents under a pile of runs, amassing 213 for 6, the highest score in the BPL, thanks to sparkling half-centuries from the Chittagong bred Tamim and Charles Coventry. The earlier best total was 208 made by Dhaka Gladiators against Barisal Burners in the first edition.
The imposing total looked to have taken the match out of Barisal's grasp but a committed batting performance saw them drive home a close finish. Every batsman got runs, with the Pakistani Azhar Mahmood top scoring with a 28 ball 54 with three fours and four sixes that saw them finish at 209 for 7 from their 20 overs.
Earlier, Rajshahi's huge total came courtesy of a whirlwind opening stand between Tamim and Coventry as the pair put on 85 in just over six overs. Dashing opener Tamim was top scorer with a 47-ball 66 that contained three fours and five sixes but the 29-year old Zimbabwean right-hander Coventry was more aggressive than his illustrious partner as he played 25 balls to score 62 runs with the help of seven fours and four sixes.
Another Zimbabwean Sean Ervine took charge to make sure that Rajshahi crossed the 200-mark for the third time in the ongoing competition. Defending champions Dhaka Gladiators have also made the feat twice. Ervine smote three sixes and two fours during his unbeaten 11-ball 30.
Alok Kapali claimed three wickets and Shafiul Islam took two wickets with both bowling at under six an over.
SCORES IN BRIEF
DURONTO RAJSHAHI: 213-6 in 20 overs (Tamim 66, Coventry 62, Katich 23, Ervine 30 not out, Abul 13, extras 12; Azhar 1-50, Shafiul 2-23, Kapali 3-23).
BARISAL BURNERS: 209-7 in 20 overs (Hodge 23, Sabbir 28, Denly 31, Mahmood 54, Shafiul 25 not out, extras 10; Monir 1-23, Nayeem 1-45, Abul 2-43, Tajiul 1-36, Ervine 1-39)
Result: Duronto Rajshahi won by four runs.
Player-of-the-match: Charles Coventry