Failures bring success for Kings
A below-par bowling line-up has compelled the Rajshahi Kings to chase a number of high totals in this season of the Bangladesh Premier League. They had the difficult tasks of overcoming totals of 192 and 190 against the Barisal Bulls and the Chittagong Vikings recently.
And while they did moderately well, crossing the 170-barrier on both occasions, they never managed to cross the finish line.
That is one of the reasons why their three-wicket win against the Dhaka Dynamites in Chittagong yesterday afternoon was so special. After Kumar Sangakkara's 46-ball 66 and Seekuge Prasanna's 16-ball 34 powered Dhaka to 182, it seemed as though Rajshahi were set to lose their fourth match on the trot.
However, a gutsy finish from the young Mehedi Hasan Miraz in the last over ensured that the half-centuries from Mominul Haque and Samit Patel did not go in vain.
Mominul's 42-ball 56 and Patel's 39-ball 75 brought the equation down to 18 required from 18 balls with five wickets in hand. The match was in the bag and the last three overs were supposed to be a mere formality. However, the 18th over produced just six runs and Dwayne Bravo removed his national colleague Darren Sammy in the next over and gave away just three runs.
In the last over, Rajshahi were under pressure and needed nine off six balls. The first ball saw Abul Hasan get out and the second ball was driven for a single. With seven required from four balls, the odds seemed to be against Rajshahi.
However, the momentum of the game changed in just one ball. Forhad Reza went down the track and smashed Matt Coles for a four through mid-wicket. He took a single in the next ball and that brought Mehedi on strike with three required from two balls.
The youngster drove the delivery, inside-out, through point for a boundary and brought up a much-needed win for Sammy's men.
With Sabbir Rahman and Junaid Siddique dismissed early in the game, it initially seemed as though Rajshahi would not even be able to come close to Dhaka's total.
Patel and Mominul smashed 100 runs in 10.3 overs for the third wicket and revived the Kings.
While Mominul hit one six and eight fours, man-of-the-match Patel smashed six sixes and five fours. While Mominul seemed a lot more elegant with his drives, Patel used his brute power to dismiss the bowlers. The two batsmen clearly followed two different approaches and yet were successful in their own ways.
Mominul got into the act in the ninth over when he dismissed Sohrawadi Shuvo for a four and a six. While the first one was a slog through cover, the six was down the ground in grand fashion.
Patel clearly enjoyed hitting Coles all over the park. In the 12th over, he dismissed him for 19 runs with one six and three fours. In the next over he hit Shakib Al Hasan for a six through mid-wicket. That was the over that brought up Patel's half-century off just 26 balls. Mominul got it an over later, in 38 balls.
By the time they both were dismissed, the game was all but in the bag.
Earlier, a brilliant 66 from Sangakkara, who hit three sixes and five fours, helped the Dynamites post 182. Rajshahi's Forhad Reza took two wickets, while Abul Hasan and Mohammad Sami finished with one wicket each.