Samuels maintains good form
DHAKA, Bangladesh (CMC):
Marlon Samuels helped propel Comilla Victorians to their fourth straight win of the Bangladesh Premier League here yesterday as they beat Rangpur Riders by eight runs in their final preliminary-round game.
Already out of the running for one of the four playoff spots despite their unbeaten run over the last week, Victorians rattled up 170 for six off their 20 overs and then limited Riders to 162 for eight in reply.
Victorians finished fifth in the six-team tables on 10 points while Riders ended on 12 to narrowly miss out on the next round.
Darren Sammy's Rajshahi Kings managed to squeeze into the final four as a result of Riders' demise.
Sent in at the Shere Bangla National Stadium, Victorians got their impetus from Imrul Kayes, who stroked a top score of 54 from 35 deliveries, while fellow opener Khalid Latif made 43 from 36 balls.
The pair added 88 from 62 deliveries before Samuels arrived at number three to hit 30 from 24 deliveries with two fours and a six to further the innings.
Samuels ended the campaign with 334 runs at an average of 66.8.
Riders, in reply, got a brisk 45 from opener Mohammad Shahzad and 38 apiece from Ziaur Rahman and Shahid Afridi, but the 24 runs required from the last over proved out of their reach.
In the second game of the evening, second-placed Khulna Titans beat leaders Dhaka Dynamites by six wickets, with both teams having already qualified.
Dynamites tallied 158 for seven, with Kumar Sangakkara getting 59 and Titans reaching their target with two overs to spare.
West Indies T20 star Andre Fletcher failed with nine while Nicholas Pooran finished unbeaten on one.
Guyanese fast bowler Ronsford Beaton went wicket-less in four overs, which cost 35 runs.