English midfielder Lee Andrew Tuck scored a brilliant hattrick as Abahani Limited took a seven-point lead at the top of the Bangladesh Premier League points table after thrashing Muktijoddha SKC 6-1 at MA Aziz Stadium in Chittagong on Saturday.
The Sky Blues are still the only side in the 12-team standings who are unbeaten. It was the their sixth straight league victory.
Abahani now have 35 points from 15 matches while second placed Chittagong Abahani and holders Sheikh Jamal Dhanmondi, who are third, have 27 and 25 points respectively.
Muktijoddha, in contrast, remained at fifth position with 20 points.
After Bipul put the All Reds ahead in the 21st minute, Tuck, who has been in tremendous form in his debut season, brought parity just two minutes later.
New signing, young Welsh forward Jonathan Brown gave Abahani the lead in the 33rd minute. Tuck then scored his eighth league goal in the 64th minute to make it 3-1. Tuck netted again in the 86th minute to complete his treble while Nigerian striker Sunday Chizoba grabbed his 16th league goal a minute away from the final whistle.
Brown completed the rout in injury time.
Meanwhile in the day’s first match at the same venue, an injury-time goal by Nigerian midfielder Samson Iliasu helped Team BJMC salvage a 2-2 draw against Mohammedan Sporting Club.
After the hour-mark crossed without a single goal, Towhidul Alam Sabuj put the Black and Whites ahead in the 69th minute before Guinean striker Ismael Bangoura doubled the lead from a penalty in the 75th minute.
BJMC staged a brilliant comeback with Nigerian forward Eleta Kingsley pulling one back in the 84th minute but it was the in-form Samson who scored a brilliant header to equalise the margin two minutes into injury time. It was Samson's 10th goal in the league this season.
(Tuck 23, 64, 86, Brown 33, 90+1, Sunday 89) 1 Muktijoddha
(Sabuj 69, 75 – P) 2 BJMC
(Kingsley 84, Samson 90+2)