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|Shakib Al Hasan||2||7||0||0||28.57|
|Mohammad Zakir Hasan||2||5||0||0||40.00|
|Shakib Al Hasan||2.0||0||11||1||5.50|
January 5 will mark the beginning of yet another edition of Bangladesh's premier domestic T20 competition, Bangladesh Premier League, with four teams set to lock horns on the opening day. In the first of the two matches to be played on Saturday, we have the defending champions, Rangpur Riders, taking on Chittagong Vikings. The second match will be played between Dhaka Dynamites and Rajshahi Kings who finished at second and sixth spots respectively in the last edition. Let's take a quick glance at the combination of the two teams on paper and how they're expected to fare in the second contest of the day.
Led by Bangladeshi T20 captain Shakib Al Hasan, the Dynamites have always been an explosive team in the tournament. Since their debut in 2015, they've qualified for the knockouts in all three seasons with their best coming in 2016 where they lifted the trophy. They were the runners-up in the last season and will be looking to take it one step further this time around.
Along with the services of Shakib Al Hasan, they have T20 veterans in Sunil Narine and Kieron Pollard who are known for their T20 skills across the globe. Andre Russell, who missed out in the last season, has returned for them and his crazy hitting skills along with his quick bowling may come in handy.
The Dynamites are known to buy and field T20 heavyweights and their superb record in BPL justifies that. With so many all-rounders in Pollard, Andre Russell, Shakib Al Hasan, Sunil Narine, they have an impeccable balance with plenty of options available in both batting and bowling.
Another advantage for Dhaka Dynamites over the course of the tournament will be the fact that they'll be playing most of their matches at their home ground. All in all, the Dynamites have a strong team with plenty of T20 veterans at their disposal. They bat deep which is always a plus in the shortest format of the game.
Hazratullah Zazai, SP Narine, R Talukdar, Shakib Al Hasan, Kieron Pollard, Andre Russell, Mizanur Rahman, Nurul Hasan, Shuvagata Hom, Mohor Sheikh, Rubel Hossain.
The Kings are coming off a disappointed last season where they failed to win most of their matches. Out of 12 games played last year, they won only four games and ended up at the sixth spot in the points table which was a steep decline after their brilliant run in 2016 where they finished second.
Darren Sammy was the chief architect of their superb performance in 2016, but the Kings decided to drop him at the players draft. It was even more surprising to see Mushfiqur Rahim not being retained considering his form, stature, and fan-following he brings to the side.
The Kings strengthened their bowling by retaining Mustafizur Rahman, Mehidy Hasan, Mominul Haque, and Zakir Hasan along with the pre-draft signings of Afghan leg-spinner Qais Ahmed and Christian Jonker.
The Kings have decided to bank on experience the notable pickings of Ryan ten Doeschate, Mohammad Hafeez, and Shahriar Nafeez. Mominul Haque and Mehidy Hasan have done particularly well in international cricket and Laurie Evans was brilliant in Vitality T20 Blast. Although the Kings do not have any big names in their lineup, they have a few players who have done remarkably well in T20 leagues around the globe. If they can adapt to conditions quickly and replicate what they've done before, the Kings could be the dark horses of the tournament.
Mominul Haque, Soumya Sarkar, Mohammad Hafeez, Christiaan Jonker, Laurie Evans, Zakir Hasan, Mehidy Hasan, Alauddin Babu, Qais Ahmad, A Sunny, Mustafizur Rahman.
Both the teams have employed a different strategy as far as picking the players at the draft is concerned. While Dhaka Dynamites have gone with their tried and test bunch of flamboyant all-rounders, the Kings are relying heavily on specialists. Both the teams have their one strength and weaknesses, but the Dynamites have done better historically and with the likes of Shakib Al Hasan, Andre Russell, and Sunil Narine, they are better placed to win the upcoming encounter to kickstart their BPL campaign.
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