National Cricket League December 15, 2003

Sabbir Khan stars as Chittagong win thriller

Wisden Cricinfo staff

Chittagong 219 for 8 (Masumud 65, Faisal 64) beat Rajshahi 218 (Mashud 56*) by 2 runs

Sabbir Khan, an offspinner, recorded the first hat-trick of the 50-over domestic competition as Chittagong completed an eight-wicket victory over Rajshahi at the Comilla Stadium. Chittagong become the only team to emerge victorious in both forms of the Mirzapore Tea Fifth National Cricket League.

Sabbir achieved the milestone after dismissing the last three batsmen - Rezwanul Islam, Mohammad Shahzada and Saifullah Khan. The mop-up operation restricted Rajshahi to 218 and Sabbir finished with 4 for 33. Earlier, Khalid Mashud, the Rajshahi captain, had hit an unbeaten 56 to take them to a respectable 218.

In reply, Faisal Hossain and Masumud Dowla slammed half-centuries as Chittagong reached the target with three balls to spare in a nail-biting finish. Masumud, the opener, top-scored with a steady 65 - containing three fours - while Faisal continued his rich vein of form with a 93-ball 64. Faisal's knock contained two sixes and three fours.

Barisal 144 for 9 beat Dhaka 140 by 1 wicket

Irresponsible batting cost Dhaka dear, as Barisal scraped home by one wicket at the Dhanmondi Stadium in Dhaka. They were bundled out for 140 in 43 overs after being put in to bat in the morning.

Yet, they fought till the death in defence of a paltry score, until the penultimate over when Tariqul Islam decisively swung the game Barisal's way. Needing 12 runs from the last two overs Tariqul scored 10 out of the 11 runs conceded by Fahim Muntasir, the offspinner, in the 49th over. He struck two magnificent boundaries to tie the scores before Mustadir Litu, who made a valuable 26, finished the match in style with a boundary through point.

Kamal Ahmed top-scored for Barisal with 34 off 69 balls while Rashedur Rahman made 28. Earlier Anisur Rahman, the Barisal captain, had done the early damage with his left-arm medium pace, accounting for three batsmen leaving Dhaka tottering at 22 for 4. Naimur Rahman's gritty 43 began the fightback, but a misunderstanding with Niamur Rashid resulted in him being run out, and the rest crumbled without much resistance.

Sylhet 189 for 7 (Nasirul Alam 50*) beat Khulna 88 by 101 runs

Khulna were knocked out for 88 while chasing Sylhet's total of 189 at the Sylhet stadium. Sanjid Sami was the wrecker-in-chief with 4 for 22. He was supported by Mohammad Rana, who took 3 for 36 as Khulna were blown away.

Earlier, Sylhet put on a good batting performance with Nasirul Alam anchoring the innings with an unbeaten half-century.