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Record-breaking Khulna reclaim NCL title

  • Published at 08:25 pm November 19th, 2019
Khulna
Khulna players celebrate winning the NCL in Khulna Tuesday Courtesy

Khulna, who won three back-to-back titles from 2015-2016 to 2017-2018, surpassed six-time winner Rajshahi, the champion of previous edition, on the same day when the latter were relegated to tier two with a defeat against Rangpur

Khulna regained the supremacy of the country’s first-class cricket and also became the most successful division as they became champion of the National Cricket League for a record seventh time Tuesday.

Khulna, who won three back-to-back titles from 2015-2016 to 2017-2018, surpassed six-time winner Rajshahi, the champion of previous edition, on the same day when the latter were relegated to tier two with a defeat against Rangpur.

Khulna v Dhaka 

Khulna needed just a draw in the final round at their home ground Sheikh Abu Naser Stadium but on the final day Ziaur Rahman’s five-for bundled Dhaka out for 216 leaving a target of 117 runs. 

Khulna opener Anamul Haque scored 79 off just 76 balls not only to ensure an emphatic nine-wicket win but also become the second man behind Dhaka’s Taibur Rahman to score over 500 runs in the tournament.

Dhaka, the runners-up of the tournament, who resumed on 102/5, made a good start in the last day but the collapse started when their overnight batsman Raqibul Hasan was run out on 99 leaving the team on 211/6. 

Dhaka lost their next three wickets including that of Arafat Sunny Jr, who made 53, on the same score of 216 and as Shahadat Hossain did not appear due to his ban that he received after abusing Sunny, their innings ended abruptly.

Khulna captain Nurul Hasan, who scored an unbeaten 150 in the first innings, was adjudged man of the match.

Nurul however, credited the victory to the team effort. 

“It was the result of a team effort. We had a wonderful season where players performed in the right time,” said the captain to Dhaka Tribune.

Nurul, who will turn 26 Thursday, also credited his premier bowler, experienced campaigner Abrur Razzak, who finished with 31 wickets in the tournament where no one else could take even 20 wickets, despite missing the last round. 

“We were a bit anxious as we did not have Raz [Razzak] bhai. But once again we showed our strength of picking the game in the right time as Zia bhai and others did exceptionally well,” said the wicket-keeper batsman. 

“For me, scoring even 10 or 20 runs that contribute for a win is more important than a useless century,” concluded the centurion. 

Rangpur v Rajshahi

Rangpur, who needed a win to stay in tier one, gave a sporting declaration on their overnight score of 228/6 and reaped rich rewards as Rajshahi were skittled out for just 93 chasing 249 at their home ground Shaheed Kamruzzaman Stadium.

Alauddin Babu and Ariful Haque grabbed three wickets each and the latter, who bagged six wickets in the first innings, was adjudged man of the match. 

The other match, a heavy scoring tier two affair between Barisal and Dhaka Metropolis ended in a draw.

21ST NCL, ROUND 6, DAY 4

Tier 1

Rangpur 274 & 228/6d in 61 overs (Tanbir 72*, Delwar 4/73) beat Rajshahi 254 & 93 in 43.1 overs (Junaid 34, Ariful 3/20, Babu 3/42) by 155 runs

Khulna 379 & 117/1 in 25.4 overs (Anamul 79*, Amit 33*) beat Dhaka 279 & 216 in 44 overs (Raqibul 99, Ziaur 5/44) by nine wickets

Tier 2

Barisal 414 & 269 in 84 overs (Fazle 75, Arafat 5/85) drew with Dhaka Metro 466 & 19/1 in five overs (Azmir 10, Saykat 8*)