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The Report by Mohammad Isam
February 1, 2013
Dhaka Gladiators 137 for 5 (Shah 43*,Taijul 2-24) beat Duronto Rajshahi 124 for 9 (Tamim 33, Thomas 2-15) by 13 runs
Duronto Rajshahi bungled up another chase against Dhaka Gladiators, losing by 13 runs in Chittagong. The holiday crowd was proudly behind Tamim Iqbal's Rajshahi for most of the afternoon, but as they slid from 114 for 5 to 122 for 9, the packed house got fully behind the Gladiators fightback.
In the two sides' previous encounter, Rajshahi had lost to Gladiators by the same margin, having failed to chase 156.
Rajshahi required 33 from the last five overs but a great 17th over from Chris Liddle, in which he got rid of the dangerous Chamara Kapugedera and conceded only three runs, changed the complexion of the game. They took just 11 runs off the next three overs, stumbling as wickets fell regularly.
The chase had begun promisingly, as Tamim went after Mashrafe Mortaza from the first over. His 18-ball 33 contained 30 runs in boundaries, including a straight driven six off Mortaza in the first over. But Liddle, Alfonso Thomas, Saqlain Sajib and Mosharraf Hossain all took two wickets each, and bowled tightly enough to defend 137.
The Gladiators achieved their modest score due to Owais Shah's patience and ability to keep his off-field issues away from his game. Shah was unbeaten on 43 off 40 balls, having survived a dropped catch at third-man. He smashed four boundaries, and a six over cover off Abul Hasan.
Apart from Shah, youngsters Soumya Sarkar and Anamul Haque promised much but couldn't build on their starts. Sarkar batted a bit like Shakib, hitting a six and four boundaries in his 24-ball 30.
Rajshahi's young bowlers also impressed, especially Naeem Islam jnr and Taijul Islam who took two wickets each, but their inability with the bat exposed the side's weakness. The loss was Rajshahi's fourth in six games, while Dhaka remained in second position with five wins.
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