Rajshahi Kings, last year's runners-up, did not make it to the top four in this year's BPL. They had only four wins, hardly looking like a contender for the play-offs.
Darren Sammy, who continued as captain, tried his best this time too, but to no avail. A captain is only as good as his team and the likes of Mushfiqur Rahim, Luke Wright and Samit Patel hardly delivered. Particularly disappointing for Rajshahi was how their two local big guns - Mushfiqur and Mustafizur Rahman - didn't fire. Mushfiqur made only 185 runs in 11 innings with one fifty, while Mustafizur took four wickets in five games. Among their overseas recruits, Sammy fired at times while James Franklin made some important runs, but batting lower down the order did not always give him enough deliveries to score off.
What didn't work
Injuries to Sammy, Luke Wright and Lendl Simmons may have frustrated them during the different stages of the tournament but Rajshahi, as they showed in 2016, are supposed to be a different breed. Spirit alone could have taken them through, but that too was missing this season.
There were some impressive performances from Sammy, Zakir Hasan, Qazi Onik and Mominul but it was all individual; there was hardly a game in which two or three performed in unison. Mominul was their highest run-getter but with just 230 runs, while the veteran Mohammad Sami's 11 wickets was the most among their bowlers. Sammy, Patel and Dwayne Smith topped the strike-rate charts but the last two weren't regular in the XI.
Tips for 2018
A higher investment on run-getters should be Rajshahi's priority for next season. Better research on local players would be helpful.