Fortune Barishal New BPL Champions 

Fortune Barishal clinched their maiden Bangladesh Premier League title after they beat four-time champions Comilla Victorians by six wickets during the one-sided final at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur on Friday.

Barishal bowlers demonstrated a superb bowling effort on the big day as they restricted the star-studded Comilla batting line-up to 154-6 in their 20 overs after they elected to bowl first in a jam-packed stadium.

Barishal pacer James Fuller finished with 2-43 while Mohammad Saifuddin, Kyle Mayers and Obed McCoy took one wicket each.

For Comilla, Mahidul Islam Ankon made the highest 38 off 35 balls while Andre Russell and Jaker Ali Anik remained not out on 27 and 20 runs respectively.

Barishal, in reply, got off to a flying start as skipper Tamim Iqbal and Mehidy Hasan Miraz put up 76 runs in the opening stand in just eight overs before the former was dismissed after making 39 off 26 balls.

Mehidy (29) became Moeen Ali’s second victim in the contest but in-form Mayers struck 46 off 30 balls while Mushfiqur Rahim (13), Mahmudullah (seven not out) and David Miller (eight not out) scored the remaining runs to take Barishal to 157-4 in 19 overs and give Comilla the taste of first defeat in a BPL final after four successive victories.

Moeen and Mustafizur Rahman took two wickets for Comilla.

Earlier, Comilla might have thought of posting a 170-plus total when Russell hit Fuller three sixes in the penultimate over but Saifuddin then bowled a spectacular final over where he conceded only seven runs despite bowling four extras to limit Comilla to a gettable score.

Comilla got off to a poor start as they lost opener Sunil Narine (five) in the opening over before in-form Tawhid Hridoy (15) and Liton Das (16) were dismissed by Fuller within the powerplay.

Comilla’s middle-order batters then failed to accelerate their innings during the middle overs of their innings while they also lost the wickets of Johnson Charles (17) and Moeen (three) to give Barishal control in the contest.

Mahidul played a dogged innings but his resistance also came to an end when Saifuddin bowled him in the 17th over which brought Russell to the crease.

Russell then hit four sixes in his 14-ball 27-run innings but it could only help Comilla post a respectable total but it wasn’t sufficient to defend at the end.

Meanwhile, a minute’s silence was observed before the start of the final as a mark of respect to the victims of Thursday’s Baily Road fire incident, which took 46 lives.

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