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|M Junaid Siddique||20||11||3||0||181.82|
With a mammoth win over Rajshahi Kings, Sylhet Sixers continue to hang in the tournament albeit by a thin thread. The 76-run win not only helped them climb out of the bottom of the table but also kept them in the hunt for the playoffs. They'd have yet another battle to win when they meet Khulna Titans on 26th January at the same venue. Khulna Titans are although in contention for the playoffs, their chances are more mathematical than practical. Thanks to their terrible net run rate, they not only need to win all of their upcoming matches, but they also need to do it with huge margins. The upcoming battle is largely a battle of survival for both the sides and we expect it to be a nail-biter.
Batting first on a good batting wicket, Liton Das got them off to a flying start but perished in a bid to accelerate too quickly too soon. From 20 without a loss, the Sixers slid to 28 for 2 and looked in a spot of bother. They needed a partnership to stabilize the innings and the pair of Jason Roy and Afif Hossain provided them with a perfect tonic.
Jason Roy, who joined them as a replacement for David Warner, started off beautifully and played a well-compiled knock of 42 coming in just 28 deliveries which included four boundaries and a couple of sixes. Although Afif Hossain scored vital 28 runs, his knock was a tad slower and in turn, shifted pressure on other batsmen. With small but useful cameos from Kapali and Nawaz and a flourishing finish provided by Sohail Tanvir, the Sixers eventually finished on 180.
Considering the flat deck, the Kings certainly would have fancied chasing that total with Laurie Evans and Ryan ten Doeschate in fine form. Sohail Tanvir, however, had other ideas. He removed Laurie Evans in the first over which rocked Kings' plan. Other bowlers, namely, Taskin Ahmed and Alok Kapali picked up a couple of wickets each. Mohammad Nawaz was the man responsible to deepen the damage done by Tanvir as he picked three important wickets in the middle overs. It was a complete bowling effort which eventually helped them dismantle the Kings and script a 76-run victory.
Liton Das, Sabbir Rahman, JJ Roy, Afif Hossain, Nicholas Pooran, Nabil Samad, Alok Kapali, Mohammad Nawaz, S Tanvir, Taskin Ahmed, Ebadat Hossain.
Just a couple of days ago, Khulna Titans' wretched run came to an end as they defeated Sylhet Sixers riding on an all-round performance from David Wiese. This was a welcome win for Khulna Titans which kept them hanging in the tournament albeit by a thin thread.
The foundation of their win was laid by a perfect partnership by Brendan Taylor and Junaid Siddique as they raced to 67 runs at the end of the first powerplay. It was just about the time Titans lost it with two consecutive wickets. Some irresponsible batting by their middle order left them in a spot of bother. David Wiese got them out of trouble with a match-defining 38 run knock towards the end of the innings as the Titans headed into the break with momentum on their side.
Subhashish Roy got Titans off to a dream start as he clean-bowled dangerous Liton Das on the first delivery of the match. With useful contributions from Junaid Khan and Taijul Islam, they had Sixers on the mat with four down for 56. However, their bowlers failed to cope up with the counter-attacking innings from Mohammad Nawaz and Nicholas Pooran until David Wiese and Junaid Khan got rid of Pooran and Nawaz respectively. Eventually, they restricted Sixers to 149 winning the match by 21 runs.
BRM Taylor, M Junaid Siddique, Al Amin, Nazmul Hossain, Mahmudullah, Ariful Haque, D Wiese, Yasir Shah, Taijul Islam, Junaid Khan, Subashis Roy.
It's an important game for both the sides with a possible playoff place at stake. For Khulna Titans, it is a do-or-die encounter and they exhibited how dangerous they can be in the last encounter. The Sixers, too, are coming off a superb win over Rajshahi Kings and will be a confident bunch of players. However, they displayed an apparent vulnerability of keeping the tempo up in the middle overs. Additionally, the Titans will take their last win's confidence, which was against the Sixers, into the upcoming game. Khulna Titans appeared a better side when the two teams met for the last time and we think they're going to prevail yet again.
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