DPL giants set to face off
The Dhaka Premier League's Super League round is set for two exciting encounters today. At the BKSP in Savar, Mushfiqur Rahim's Mohammedan will take on Tamim Iqbal's Abahani while league leaders Victoria Sporting Club will take on second-placed Legends of Rupganj, with just a point separating the two, at the Khan Shaheb Osman Ali Stadium in Fatullah.
The match at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur, when compared to the other two games, is expected to be a little less intense with Nasir Hossain's Prime Doleshwar taking on Sabbir Rahman's Prime Bank. It's a game that Prime Doleshwar are expected to win, going by the recent form of the sides.
Although the face-off between the traditional heavyweights Abahani and Mohammedan always garners plenty of attention, the match between Victoria and Rupganj will be a lot more crucial as far as the championship is concerned.
The last time these two teams met, Rupganj's Taijul Islam hit a six off the last delivery to dramatically tie the game. Ever since then, both sides have shown a balanced approach and it is therefore not a surprise that these two sides are leading the table at the moment.
Victoria seem to be the favourites to win the game. Their batsmen Abdul Majed and Al-Amin have both been in divine touch. With 610 runs, Majed is currently the highest run-getter of the competition. And then there is the young Al-Amin, who has 530 runs but has a better batting average, 53.
Al-Amin is quite a handful with the ball as well. His off-breaks earned him a five-wicket haul in the crucial game against Gazi Group Cricketers on June 9.
And then there are the likes of Chaturanga de Silva, the highest wicket-taker of the competition, Mominul Haque and Nadif Chowdhury who provide further stability to the team.
Rather than depending on individual players, Rupganj have played as a unit throughout the competition and that is the reason they have done well despite the fact that their top batsman, Soumya Sarkar, has not fired as yet.
Their bowling front is led by Alauddin Babu, Abu Hider and Mosharraf Hossain. While both Alauddin and Abu have 13 wickets each, Mosharraf has 12. On the batting side, their hopes lie on Mohammad Mithun. They have not been doing too well with the bat, which is why they will need Soumya to hit form. He looked good in the last game when he scored a 40 against Prime Bank, but he needs to continue scoring in order to regain confidence.
The last time Abahani and Mohammedan met, the latter, against the odds, beat a strong Abahani outfit. This time though, the scenario is the opposite. Abahani aced their last few games and seem to be doing well. Mohammedan on the other hand have not been able to find their rhythm. They were bundled out for just 128 in the last game against Rupganj.
Prime Doleshwar will hope they can beat Prime Bank in Dhaka and put the BKSP blues behind them. Doleshwar were on the ascendency when the umpires decided to get off the field during their last game against Abahani. Nobody knows when that game will resume and it could lead to tense scenarios. And the best way to overcome that is to win.