Mahmudullah, Wessels lift Khulna to 151

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Fresh off a match-winning innings against league leaders Dhaka Dynamites on Saturday, Khulna Titans skipper Mahmudullah Riyad top-scored with a quickfire 44 to help his team to a fighting total of 151 for seven in their Bangladesh Premier League match against Barisal Bulls at the Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium in Chittagong.

It was Mahmudullah and Riki Wessel’s 53-run partnership in 6.1 overs that set Khulna back on track after a brilliant opening spell from left-arm spinner Taijul Islam who bowled a double-wicket over, the fifth of the innings, to get rid of openers Andre Fletcher and Hasanuzzaman. Both were caught trying to clear long on, but that was a result of Taijul conceding just four runs in his first two overs. The left-armer finished the over with figures of two for eight after three, and later added the wicket of Mahmudullah, who after hitting a straight six in the 11th over fell to Taijul’s brave ploy to flight the very next ball and was caught at short third man.

Mahmudullah hit three fours and two sixes in his 26-ball knock, including a four and a six off Fazle Mahmud in the 10th over, which was the middle of a three-over period that netted the Titans 33 runs. That purple patch ended with Mahmudullah’s wicket, and the tide seemed to have turned back in Barisal’s favour when off the very first ball of the next over, Shuvagata Hom was run out at the striker’s end despite Wessels shouting a loud ‘No!’ after he completed the single through a nudge to long on.

But Wessels ensured that all the good work of his skipper was not undone. He had played second fiddle in their partnership — he was on five off 11 when Mahmudullah departed – but he took charge from then on, hitting five fours and a six from the 12th over to the 17th, when he was the fifth man out for a 29-ball 40, bowled by Rayad Emrit. Kevon Cooper followed in the next over, gloving a pull off Rumman Raees to the keeper.

From 128 for six in the 18th over, Ariful Haque and Taibur Rahman carried the score to 151, on which score the latter departed caught at mid off in the last ball of the innings delivered by Thisara Perera.

Source: The Daily Star

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