CHITTAGONG, Bangladesh, CMC – West Indies batsmen Evin Lewis and Nicholas Pooran produced cracking half-centuries to spearhead wins for their respective franchises in the Bangladesh Premier League here yesterday.
Playing in the opening match of the doubleheader at the Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium, Lewis belted an astonishing 75 off 31 deliveries as Dhaka Dynamites chased down 188 to beat Chittagong Vikings by seven wickets with seven balls to spare, and storm to the top of the standings.
Pooran took the spotlight in the night’s finale, carving out a handsome 57 off 26 balls as Khulna Titans crushed Darren Sammy’s Rajshahi Kings by 68 runs.
Titans are top with 13 points, two clear of Dynamites, with Comilla Victorians third on 10 points.
Kings lie sixth in the seven-team standings on six points with Vikings rock bottom on five. Faced with a daunting run-chase, Dynamites were given a flying start by Lewis who blasted three fours and nine amazing sixes in a whirlwind innings.
The left-hander lost opening partner Shahid Afridi without scoring to the third ball of the innings with a single run on the board but added 118 for the second wicket with England’s Joe Denly (44) to put the innings back on track.
Lewis eventually fell in the 12th over, caught at deep cover off fellow seamer and fellow Trinidadian Rayad Emrit (1-24) and Denly followed in the next over after striking five fours and a six. But South African Cameron Delport stroked an unbeaten 43 and Shakib-al-Hasan made 22 not out, the pair sharing an unbroken fourth-wicket partnership of 67, to see their side home.
Trinidad and West Indies off-spinner Sunil Narine had earlier grabbed one for 11 in four miserly overs to combat half-centuries from Anamul Haque (73) and Luke Ronchi (59), as Vikings reached 187 for five off their 20 overs.
In the other match, meanwhile, Titans flexed their muscle to pile up 213 for five off their 20 overs.
The left-handed Pooran led the assault with half a dozen fours and three sixes while Afif Hossain hit 54 not out and Nazmul Hossain, 49.
West Indies Twenty20 captain Carlos Brathwaite came at the end to lash a 14-ball 34 which included three fours and three sixes.
In reply, Sammy was dismissed for just one as Kings were dismissed for 145, with seamer Shafiul Islam claiming five for 26.