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Shakib steers Rangpur to BPL playoffs

Shakib steers Rangpur to BPL playoffs

Shakib Al Hasan continued his form, hitting yet another half-century as Rangpur Riders thrashed Chattogram Challengers by 18 runs for its eighth victory in 10th matches of the Bangladesh Premier League (BPL) T20 at the Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium in Chattogram on Friday (Feb 16). Having registered the victory, Rangpur consolidated its top spot, and also confirmed the playoffs as the first team.

Fresh from his 31 ball-69, Shakib once again defied his recurring eye problem to blast 39 ball-62 as Rangpur posted 187-8 after electing to bat first.

Rangpur bowlers then bowled in disciplined way to put the side in sight of a facile victory but Chattogram West Indies recruit Romario Shephard bludgeoned the bowlers to raise a prospect of an unlikely victory.

However, Rangpur overcame Shepherd scare to restrict Chattogram to 169-6.

Shepherd battled lonely to strand on 66 not out. He smote five fours and six sixes in his 30 balls knock.

Shakib led the side's recovery after Rangpur were slumped to 33-2 in sixth over. He counterattacked but Chattogram held the edge removing Rony Talukder who hit 25 off 19 and captain Nurul Hasan Sohan (5).

Mahedi Hasan smashed 17 ball-34 with four sixes to give Shakib an apt support as the duo shared 68 runs for the fifth wicket.

Bilal Khan broke through with the wicket of Mahedi before Shakib single-handedly edged the side closer to 200-run mark.

Shakib hit five fours and three sixes for his 62 before being out in the penultimate over.

Rangpur's South African recruit Dwaine Pretorius claimed 3-14 in an uninterrupted four overs spell to rip through Chattogram top order.

Mahedi Hasan took 2-17 to cut down the middle order as Rangpur stood on the brink of a victory with ease. But Shepherd special made the match interesting before Rangpur confirmed the victory.