Andre Russell-led Rajashi Royals secure impressive 21-run win to lift maiden BPL trophy against Khulna Tigers

Andre Russell-led Rajashi Royals lifted their maiden Bangladesh Premier League trophy. (Source: www.tigercricket.com.bd)

Andre Russell-led Rajashi Royals lifted their maiden Bangladesh Premier League trophy after defeating Khulna Tigers by 21 runs in an enthralling contest in Dhaka on Friday. Chasing a 171-run target, Tigers suffered a middle-order collapse as they could only manage 141/8 in their respective 20 overs.

The Windies all-rounder was named man of the match for his all-round performance as he added 27 from 16 balls with the ball and picked two wickets in his four-overs quota. Russell was also handed the player of the series title.

TOSS: Khulna Tigers won the toss and invited Rajashi Royals to bat first.

FIRST INNINGS: After being asked to bat first, the Royals got off to a slow start, losing opener Afif Hossain early on 10. Liton Das also couldn't do much as he struggled to time the ball and was removed on 25 by Shahidul Islam. However, a brilliant 52-run knock by wicket-keeper batsman Irfan Sukkur and some power hitting towards the end by Mohammad Nawaz and skipper Russel helped Royals post a challenging 170/4 on the board. Nawaz fetched 41 in just 20 deliveries as the duo amassed 54 in the final three overs of their innings.

SECOND INNINGS: In response, Tigers got off to a dreadful start losing both openers, Najmul Hossain Shanto and Mehidy Hasan, inside the first two overs. However, this got steady for the Mushfiqur Rahim side as the pair of Shamsur Rahman and Rilee Rossouw added 74 runs for the third wicket. However, soon after Rossouw's departure on 37, Tigers lost their plot as they kept losing wickets in quick succession. Following the dismissal of both batsmen, Tigers struggled to keep up the asking rate and could only manage 149/8 in their 20 overs. For Royals, Mohammad Irfan, Russell, and Kamrul Islam Rabbi claimed two wickets each.

Brief Scores: RR: 170/4 (20 overs)| KT: 149/8 (20 overs)