Prime Bank brought Abahani Limited's six-match winning streak to an end in the Dhaka Premier League on Friday. It was Shariful Islam's timely breakthroughs that helped them prevail over the defending champions BKSP-3 Ground, with the medium pacer taking four wickets and setting up a nine-run victory.
Chasing 247 to win, Abahani slipped to 17 for 3 in the sixth over, with Shariful removing Nazmul Hossain Shanto and Mohammad Mithun. Saif Hassan and captain Nasir Hossain then added 127 runs for the fourth wicket, both batsmen reaching fifties.
Nasir made 65 off 88 balls with five fours and a six while Saif lasted till the 42nd over, top scoring with 75. He struck five fours and a six in his 124-ball knock. Sharfiul then removed Nasir and Abahani's Indian recruit Manpreet Gony, before Yusuf Pathan closed out the game with a tight final over, conceding only nine of the 19 runs required.
Earlier, Al-Amin's 84, and 62 by Zakir Hasan helped Prime Bank to 246 in 49.2 overs. Al-Amin struck seven fours and a six in his 98-ball knock while Zakir hit six fours. Mashrafe Mortaza took four wickets while Gony and Saqlain Sajib took two each.
Pace bowler Mohammad Azim defended six runs in the last over to help Mohammedan Sporting Club tie with Prime Doleshwar Sporting Club at the KSOA Stadium in Fatullah. Azim took his fifth and sixth wickets off the first two balls of the over before restricting Arafat Sunny and Mamun Hossain to five runs off the last four as both sides ended up with a total of 286.
Azim's 6 for 67 trumped Liton Das' second century in this year's tournament. Liton made 129 off 122 balls with eight fours and two sixes while Azim broke every crucial partnership. He removed Marshall Ayub after he put on 63 for the third wicket with Liton. Then Azim took the wicket of Farhad Hossain, ending his 124-run fourth wicket stand with Liton. Farhad Reza, the captain, who was looking dangerous hitting two sixes in his 10-ball 18, also perished to the pace bowler. Mohammad Arafat and Zohaib Khan were the last two wickets that fell to Azim.
Earlier, Shamsur Rahman, Raqibul Hasan and Bipul Sharma struck fifties and added important partnerships to take Mohammedan to 286 in 49.5 overs. Shamsur top scored with 75 off 93 balls while Raqibul made 72, and the pair added 108 runs for the fifth wicket. Sharma struck three sixes and as many fours in his 31-ball 53. Farhad Reza returned figures of 3 for 66.
Left-arm pace bowlers Sajedul Islam and Kazi Kamrul Islam, offspinner Sohag Gazi and left-arm spinner Elias Sunny took two wickets each while offspinner Jalal Saxena and medium-pacer Robiul Haque took the other two as Gazi Group were bowled out for 170 runs in 42.4 overs. Gurkeerat Singh top-scored with 67 off 77 balls, peppered with seven fours.
Dhanmondi Club had earlier made 265 for 8 in 50 overs, centered around Shykat's 115. He had retired hurt in the 43rd over, after having struck six fours and five sixes off 118 balls. He added 86 runs for the first wicket with Hasanuzzaman, and another 72 runs for the fourth wicket with Gazi after they had suffered a mini-collapse. Shykat also put together 59 runs for the fifth wicket with captain Elias Sunny before he left the ground with cramps.
Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo's Bangladesh correspondent. @isam84