Alex Hales and Rilee Rossouw smashed dual hundreds to guide Rangpur Riders to a commanding 72-run victory against Chittagong Vikings and keep them firmly in chance for a place in the play-offs in Chattogram on Friday.
Hales smashed 100 off 49 balls and Rossouw remained not-out on 100 off 51 balls as Rangpur reached 239-3 in 20 overs, the highest team total in BPL history.
Chittagong tried hard to chase down the total, with Yasir Ali top-scoring with 78 off 48 balls but the target was just too much for Chittagong as they ended up on 167-8 in their stipulated overs.
This was Chittagong’s only second defeat of the tournament, which came after five successive wins and ironically they suffered the defeat in their first match of the home ground.
Chasing a mammoth total, Mohammad Shahzad started aggressively, smashing two fours and sixes in the first three overs before getting bowled by Farhad Reza for 20 off 12 balls in the last ball of the third over.
Yasir kept on trying from one end but didn’t get proper support as Mushfiqur Rahim (22) and Mosaddek Hossain (14) got starts but failed to convert it.
All hopes for Chittagong virtually ended after Rangpur skipper Mashrafee bin Murtaza, who finished with 3-34, dismissed Yasir in the 16th over and from there Chittagong hobbled to 167-8 in 20 overs.
Earlier, Chris Gayle’s poor run with the bat continued, as Abu Jayed trapped him leg-before in the second over for only 2, but from there began the assault from the pair of Hales and Rossouw.
Hales was the aggressor in the partnership early on, picking up his fifty off 23 balls inside the powerplay, with the help of eight fours and two sixes.
Rossouw soon joined the party and started taking on the bowlers and brought up his fifty off 29 balls in the 14th over with a four off Robiul Hoque.
Rossouw tried to go for another big-shot off the next ball only to top-edge it but Sanzamul Islam in the long-on boundary missed the catch, which proved to be a costly miss for Chattogram.
Hales completed his century in the 15th over off Sikandar Raza, but gave away his wicket in the next ball, trying to hit another big shot but giving a catch to Nihaduzzaman.
AB de Villiers then came to the crease but Jayed, who finished with 2-35, dismissed him for one in the 17th over.
But Rossouw kept on piling on the runs, reaching his hundred in the first ball off the 20th over, with the help of eight fours and six sixes guiding Rangpur to a mammoth total at the end of their innings.
Want stories like this in your inbox?
Sign up to exclusive daily email
More Stories from Cricket