Johnson Charles struck a brilliant unbeaten 107 while Mohammad Rizwan made a quick-fire 73 runs as Comilla Victorians extended their unbeaten run to six in the Bangladesh Premier League (BPL)-T20 2023 after they beat Khulna Tigers by seven wickets at the Sylhet International Cricket Stadium on Tuesday (Jan 31).
Charles struck 107 off 56 balls with five fours and 11 sixes to become the fourth batsman to score a hundred in BPL 2023 after Azam Khan, Usman Khan and Iftikhar Ahmed, while in-form Rizwan struck eight fours and four sixes in his 39-ball tornado innings as Comilla raced towards victory, 213-3, in 18.2 overs to complete a dominating win in the high-scoring match.
Earlier, Tamim Iqbal scored a brilliant 95 off 61 balls while Shai Hope, who replaced Yasir Ali as skipper in the game, struck an unbeaten 91 off 55 balls as Khulna posted a massive total of 210-2 in their 20 overs after being sent into bat first.
It was Khulna’s fourth consecutive defeat in the tournament and they remained in sixth place with four points from nine matches.
Meanwhile, the win helped reigning champions Comilla strengthen their playoff chances as they now have 12 points from nine matches and currently are in third place with the same number of points as second-placed Fortune Barishal.
Sylhet Strikers remained on top of the points table after the end of the Sylhet phase with 16 points from 10 matches and they have already confirmed their berth in the playoffs.
Comilla, however, suffered an injury blow in the game as opener Liton Das (4) had to leave the field after a delivery of pacer Shafiqul Islam hurt his wrist during the second ball of Comilla’s chase.
Shafiqul then dismissed Comilla skipper Imrul Kayes (5) but Rizwan and Charles put up a 122-run stand for the next wicket to set the game for their side.
Rizwan was dismissed by Nasum Ahmed but Charles continued to demonstrate his big-hitting ability to smash the Khulna bowlers all parts of the ground and helped his side pull off the record run-chase in BPL history.
Earlier, Tamim (95) and Hope (91) shared a massive 184-run stand for the second wicket – the fifth-highest in the BPL history – to guide their side post a colossal total on board. However, the total was made ordinary by Charles and Rizwan, who exhibited a great batting display to complete the run chase with 10 balls to spare.
The BPL will now move to Dhaka for its last phase, scheduled to get underway on Feb 3.