The so called Dhaka Premier Cricket League derby turned into a total mismatch yesterday when Abahani handed their bitter rivals Mohammedan a massive 112-run defeat at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur.
Defending a fighting 259 on a rain-soaked pitch, Abahani, led by their inspirational captain Mashrafe Bin Mortaza, bundled Mohammedan out for 147 in 30.4 overs for their sixth straight win. Despite all the hype ahead of the game, the stands were almost empty and the quality of cricket out in the middle was utterly disappointing.
Mohammedan raced to 100 for 3 by the end of the 15th over, showing signs of making it a contest. But then they lost their last seven wickets for 47 runs and some of the shots their batsmen played questioned their very eligibility to be a part of the country's List A competition.
As it has been the case in the league so far, Mashrafe made the early in-roads. The experienced pace bowler removed the top three batsmen, including Mohammedan captain Shamsur Rahman (3), to finish with 3 for 37. Off-spinner Mehedi Hasan Miraz picked up three wickets for 28 runs and also dismissed Irfan Sukkur, who scored a team high 40 in Mohammedan's hopeless total.
On a wicket that experienced an early morning shower, Abahani rode on a solid 63 from opener Anamul Haque and a fluent 67 by Nasir Hossain to post a fighting total. Anamul hit four fours and a couple of sixes in his 81-ball knock. Nasir's first score of substance after a lull period contained seven boundaries. Wicketkeeper-batsman Mohammad Mithun also hit a fine 47.
Away at the Khan Shaheb Osmal Ali Stadium in Fatullah, Prime Doleshwar thrived on a fine century from Fazle Mahmud to record a 56-run win against Sheikh Jamal Dhanmondi Club.
Mahmud struck 120 off 101 balls studded with six sixes and five fours as Doleshwar, sent into bat, raced to 293 for 6 in their share of 50 overs. Liton Das also struck a fluent 69. He shared 82 runs for the second wicket with Mahmud, who also shared a vital 71 runs for the fourth wicket with Zohaib Khan (38).
Sheikh Jamal, in their chase, were all out for 237 in 45 overs despite a valiant 100 by Nurul Hasan Sohan. The tall wicketkeeper-batsman kept his side afloat after they were reduced to 82-6, putting on 123 runs for the seventh wicket with Elias Sunny (31). But the gangling right-hander ran out of partner and eventually departed as the ninth batsman with the score reading at 231-9.
It was Hasan's fourth fifty-plus knock in five games. His consistency with the bat earned him a call-up in the Sri Lanka-bound Bangladesh team for the T20I tri-series next month.
At the BKSP in Savar, veteran pace bowler Mohammad Sharif picked up six wickets, including a hattrick, to guide Legends of Rupganj to a five-wicket win against holders Gazi Group.
The right-arm pacer picked up the wickets of Rajibul Islam (5), Nadeef Chowdhury (75) and Ruhel Ahmed (0) in the last over of the 33-over-a-side contest as Gazi were bowled out for 190 in 32.4 overs. Sharif finished with 6-33 and won the player-of-the-match award.
But the Legends needed a fantastic 102-run stand for the fifth wicket between Parvez Rasool to topple Gazi's total with five balls to spare. Tushar scored a 46-ball 38. Rasool, the right-hand batsman from India, hit an unbeaten 61 off 57 balls that contained five fours and a couple of sixes. Skipper Naeem Islam scored 39 and Mushfiqur Rahim made 22.