Gazi Group Chattogram got back to winning ways as they won an absolute cliffhanger against Gemcon Khulna by three wickets in the 16th match of the ongoing Bangabandhu T20 Cup.
The game went right down the wire and the result was decided in the last delivery of the final over. Chattogram were cruising along at one stage but as Shakib Al Hasan got Soumya Sarkar out in the 10th over, momentum shifted slightly towards Khulna.
Khulna tightened their grip on the match after Mashrafe Mortaza cleaned up Mosaddek Hossain in the 15th over, with Chattogram still requiring 52 off 30.
The equation became more difficult for Chattogram as they needed 37 off three overs with only four wickets in hand. Shamsur Rahman struck couple of boundaries to bring it down to 25 off 12.
Shuvagata Hom came into the attack to bowl the penultimate over. Nahidul Islam was dropped by Mahmudullah in the first delivery of the 19th. The miss turned costly for them as the right hander bludgeoned two sixes in the same over. He got out in the last ball of the over with Chattogram needing nine runs from the last over.
Mustafizur Rahman, despite missing the first ball, put bat to ball in the second delivery and picked up a boundary to gain the upper hand. It came down to the last ball of the 20th and Chattogram needed two to win. Shamsur slogged Al-Amin Hossain's full-length ball over deep square leg for six to win an absolute thriller of a match. He remained unbeaten on 45 off 30 balls.
Sent in to bat, Gemcon Khulna were off to a decent start. Zakir Hasan was the first man to depart in the fifth over. His partner Jahurul Islam played well before perishing in the 7th over, with the score being 52 for two.
Mashrafe Mortaza, playing his first match since March 16, was promoted to number four. But he was unlucky to get run out at the non-striker's end as Shakib Al Hasan's straight drive hit the stumps, touching the bowler Rakibul Hasan's fingertips on the way. Mashrafe could manage only 1 off 1 balls.
Shakib, who came in at number three, failed to make a big score yet again. The southpaw was dismissed for a run-a-ball 15 by Mosaddek Hossain. Shakib's dismissal left Khulna in a spot of bother at 66 for four in the 11th over.
Imrul Kayes and skipper Mahmudullah paired up to do the rebuilding process. They added 43 off only 4.3 overs before Kayes perished. Mahmudullah followed soon after, scoring 26 off 17.
Shuvagata Hom's late blitz propelled Gemcon Khulna to a substantial total of 157 for nine. Hom top-scored with 32 off only 14 deliveries. The right hander struck 6 fours and a six.
Shoriful Islam picked up three wickets for 34 runs and was the pick of the bowlers. Mustafizur Rahman got two wickets but he was slightly on the expensive side, conceding 36 runs. Mosaddek Hossain and Ziaur Rahman chipped in with one apiece.
Brief scores: Gemcon Khulna 157/7 (Shuvagata Hom 32*, Mahmudullah 26, Jahurul Islam 26, Shoriful Islam 3/34, Mustafizur Rahman 2/36, Ziaur Rahman 1/18)
Gazi Group Chattogram 162/7 (Shamsur Rahman 45*, Mahmudul Hasan Joy 24, Mohammad Mithun 23, Shakib Al Hasan 2/30, Shuvagata Hom 2/34, Mashrafe Mortaza 1/28)
Result: Gazi Group Chattogram won by 3 wickets.