Just two out of scheduled four fixtures in the third round matches of the National Cricket League (NCL) got underway on Saturday, both in Cox's Bazar, as the country's flagship domestic first-class cricket competition resumed, or at least half-resumed following the sensational players' boycott and subsequent resolution that drew attention off the field last week.
The Tier-1 matches between Khulna Division and Dhaka Division, and Rajshahi Division and Rangpur Division, started on time in two venues of Cox's Bazar, which was spared the inclement weather prevailing in central and northern parts of the country.
Thus the Tier-2 matches between Barishal Division and Dhaka Metro, and Chattogram Division and Sylhet, scheduled to be held in Bogura and Rajshahi respectively, saw washouts on day 1.
The recent strike of cricketers left NCL in doubt but a quick resolution made it possible to resume the most prestigious first-class cricket event of Bangladesh, in the end affected by only a 2-day delay.
Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB), however, wanted to skip the third round but the cricketers urged BCB to not do so.
In Tier-1 match, Khulna Division opened the first innings against Dhaka Division after winning the toss and piled a good total of 290 runs for 6 in 91 overs on the first day at the Sheikh Kamal International Stadium Cox's Bazar on Saturday.
After losing their first two wickets for just 16 runs in seven overs, national player Anamul Haque Bijoy pairing with veteran Tushar Imran repaired initial damage contributing 166 runs in the 3rd wicket stand.
Opener Anamul Haque hammered a polished 112 runs off 205 balls featuring nine fours and five sixes while number four Tushar Imran contributed 124-ball 55 runs hitting six boundaries.
Besides, Mohammad Mithun (35), Mehidy Hasan Miraz (not out 30) and Ziaur Rahman (27) were the other notable batsmen for Khulna.
Taibur Rahman and Sumon Khan took two wickets each conceding 40 and 41 runs respectively.
Meanwhile not far away at the Academy ground of Sheikh Kamal International Stadium in the same district, Rangpur Division were trailing by 169 runs with eight wickets in hand after bowling out Rajshahi Division relatively cheaply on the first day of the four-day affair on Saturday.
Going to bat first, Rajshahi Division were all out for 201 runs in 71.4 overs
Captain Farhad Hossain scored 60 runs off 113 balls hitting four fours and one six, Nazmul Hossain Shanto made 67-ball 34 runs with three fours and two sixes, opener Mizanur Rahman made 24 runs off 59 balls with three fours.
Rashad Hossain bagged five wickets conceding 50 runs while Sajedul Islam and Suhrawardy Shuvo took two wickets each.
In reply, Rangpur Division opened the first innings and scored 32 for 2 in 16 overs with Medehi Maruf and Naeem Islam remained on batting with 19 and six runs respectively.