The second qualifier of the Bangladesh T20 League will be played between the winners of Eliminator, Chattogram Challengers and the losers of Qualifier 1, Rajshahi Royals. The match will set in motion tonight (15 Jan) at 6 PM (IST) at Sher-e-Bangla Stadium in Dhaka. While Khulna Tigers have already secured their place for the summit clash, both the franchises are eyeing to seal the remaining spot by winning the upcoming fixture. After having lost to Khulna Tigers in the first qualifier, Rajshahi Royals have another chance to make it to the finals. Both the teams have faced each other twice in the league round in which Chattogram won the first battle and Rajshahi registered victory in the second one.
Chattogram Challengers are standing at third spot with 8 wins, 16 points and a net run rate (NRR) of +0.129. After attaining a clinical victory over Dhaka Platoon in the Eliminator match, the Challengers will continue with the same squad in this match. Led by Mahmudullah, the team seems to be in an outstanding form as depicted in their previous match, where the skipper Mahmudullah played a captain knock with 34 runs from 14 deliveries while chasing the target of 145 runs.
In the 45th game of the tournament, Chris Gayle, Ziaur Rahman, and Imrul Kayes will be instrumental in decimating the Rajshahi bowlers. The likes of Rubel Hossain, Nasum Ahmed and Rayad Emrit, the Challengers will show exit gate to the opponent’s batsmen.
With an aim to avenge their defeat against Khulna Tigers, Rajshahi Royals will pull up their socks to win this match against Chattogram Challengers and claim their spot in finals to confront the Tigers. Under the captaincy of Andre Russell, the Royals have occupied the second spot with 8 wins out of 12 matches they have played, with an NRR of +0.420.
Barring Shoaib Malik, Rajshahi disappointed the fans in the Qualifier 1 game. Therefore, the onus of mustering a triumphant victory in this match lies on Malik’s shoulders. Apart from him, Liton Das and Afif Hossain will be the key against Chattogram-based franchise. Mohammad Irfan is likely to lead the bowling unit, while Ravi Bopara, Shoaib Malik, and Andre Russell will chip in for taking wickets at multiple occasions.
The pitch at Sher-e-Bangla Stadium in Dhaka is known to assist batsmen, as they can play long innings once they settle in the middle. The ground provides a fair balance between bat and ball. The side winning the toss should look to bat first.
According to the weather report, the temperature is likely to be around 14 to 24 degree Celsius. It will be bright and sunny throughout the day in Dhaka, with no chances of rain playing a spoilsport.
Probable Playing XI
Chris Gayle, Imrul Kayes, Mahmudullah (C), Chadwick Walton, Nurul Hasan Sohan (wk), Asela Gunaratne, Ziaur Rahman Nasum Ahmed, Ryad Emrit, Mehedi Hasan Rana, Rubel Hossain
Liton Das (wk), Afif Hossain, Shoaib Malik, Andre Russell (c), Ravi Bopara, Alok Kapali, Farhad Reza, Taijul Islam, Kamrul Islam Rabbi, Mohammad Irfan, Abu Jayed