All-rounder Sakib al Hasan put in an impressive performance to guide Victoria Sporting Club to a comfortable five-wicket win over Abahani Limited in their crucial re-match of the Dhaka Premier League at the Fatullah stadium on Thursday.
Skipper Sakib made 57 from 58 balls to help Victoria reach 195-5 in 40.1 overs after they had dismissed Abahani for a paltry 192 in 49.2 overs which saw the resumption of the league after it was postponed on March 28.
Victoria were 80-3 when Sakib came onto the crease and added a valuable 52 runs for the fourth wicket with Jahirul Islam (31) to fashion the victory.
Sakib, often accused of not being an elegant player in the domestic league, answered his critics with some well-executed shots, reaching his half-century in as many balls as his masterful innings enthralled the sparse crowd who defied the scorching heat to watch him perform.
Sakib struck two fours and as many sixes before he top-edged to be caught at short mid-wicket when trying to loft left-arm spinner Elias Sunny.
Sakib’s knock could have ended when he was on 25 had Saqlain Sajib not dropped an easy catch at mid-on off Farhad Reza’s bowling.
Sabbir Rahman remained unbeaten on 19 runs as Victoria knocked off the target with five wickets to spare.
Earlier after opting to bat, Abahani were pushed to the back-foot immediately as they lost their in-form opener Anamul Haque for a duck in the second ball of the innings bowled by Al Amin.
They were 46-3 before Marshal Ayub and skipper Mahmudullah (30) revived the innings by putting on 58 runs for the fourth wicket.
Ayub played the sheet anchor role making 66 from 93 balls while Farhad Reza and Fazle Rabbi contributed 24 and 21 respectively at the late order.
Sakib al Hasan and Victoria’s Indian recruit Iqbal Abdullah checked the run rate and seemed too hot for Abahani to handle as they picked up 2-26 and 2-30 respectively.
-With New Age input