Nazmul hits ton as Khulna finish top

Khulna Tigers batsman Nazmul Hossain celebrates his hundred during their Bangladesh Premier League match against Dhaka Platoon at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur on Saturday. — New Age photo

Opener Nazmul Hossain helped Khulna Tigers record the highest successful run-chase in Bangladesh Premier League history with a blazing hundred and finish the league stage on top when they beat Dhaka Platoon by eight wickets in Mirpur on Saturday.

Nazmul struck unbeaten 115 off 57 balls becoming the first Bangladeshi player to score a hundred in the latest edition, which overshadowed Mominul Haque’s heroic 91 off 59-ball innings as Khulna marched to 207-2 in 18.1 overs after Dhaka made 205-4 in their stipulated overs.

The previous highest successful chase in BPL was recorded by Sylhet Royals during the 2013 edition of the tournament when they surpassed Rangpur Riders’ 197-4 with one over and six wickets to spare in Mirpur.

Khulna openers Nazmul and Mehedi Hasan gave them a rollicking start in the stiff run-chase by making 70 runs within the seven overs before Mehedi was bowled by Mahedi Hasan after making 45 off 25 balls.

Nazmul then added an 81-run stand with tournament’s leading run-scorer Rilee Rossouw to take them go past 150-run mark by 14 overs before Rossouw (23) was dismissed by Shadab Khan.

Nazmul couldn’t help himself but smash Dhaka bowlers all around the ground to join Mohammad Ashraful, Shahriar Nafees, Sabbir Rahman and Tamim Iqbal as the fifth Bangladeshi to score hundred in the Twenty20 tournament.

He struck eight fours and seven sixes with his last boundary off medium pacer completing Khulna victory, which also marked the end of league phase in the tournament.

Mominul and Mahedi earlier put a record 153-run stand for the fourth wicket, highest fourth wicket stand in BPL history as Dhaka recovered from 35-3 to score their highest total in the ongoing BPL.

Mominul smashed seven fours and four sixes in his innings while Mahedi remained unbeaten on 68 off 36 balls with three fours and five sixes.

Khulna will now face Rajshahi Royals in the first qualifier on Monday while Dhaka will take on Chattogram Challengers in the eliminator on the same day.

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