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by Alastair Symondson Friday 18 January 2019
Liton Das led the way for Rangpur Riders scoring a 43-ball 70 as the opener came back to form. In reply, Rilee Rousseau also struck a half-century but that could not take Rangpur Riders to the target.
David Warner has been affected by an elbow injury but has got clearance from Cricket Australia to play two more matches in Sylhet before returning back home. He smashed a 43-ball 63 against Dhaka Dynamites and looked in good touch.
The team replaced Sohail Tanvir with Mohammad Irfan and Mehdi Hasan with Al Amin Hussain but the changes did not bear fruit. Along with Warner, Liton Das and Nicholas Pooran are other two most threatening batsmen in their lineup. Pooran started the tournament with knocks of 41, 52 and 72.
Taskin Ahmed has been impressive with the ball, the highlights being 2-34 against Rangpur Riders and 4-28 against Chittagong Vikings. Sandeep Lamichhane will also be one of their leading bowlers.
Rangpur Riders will be boosted by the addition of AB de Villiers who is expected to remain with the team for the remaining length of the tournament. Chris Gayle, despite not leaving a mark, is expected to retain his place.
The overseas players to miss out would be Ravi Bopara and Alex Hales. Skipper Mashrafe Mortaza and spinner Benny Howell would be their major bowlers.
Let's have a look at the probable playing XIs of both teams.
Sylhet Sixers- David Warner, Sabbir Rahman, Liton Das, Afif Hossain, Nicolas Pooran, Jaker Ali, Alok Kapali, Sandeep Lamichhane, Mehedi Hasan, Taskin Ahmed, Sohail Tanvir
Rangpur Riders- Rilee Rossouw, Chris Gayle, Mohammad Mithun, Mehedi Maruf, AB de Villiers, Shafiul Islam, Mashrafe Mortaza, Nahidul Islam, Farhad Reza, Benny Howell, Sohag Gazi
Who will win? – Rangpur Riders
Top Batsman (Runs Scored) – David Warner (Sylhet Sixers), AB de Villiers (Rangpur Riders)
Top Bowler (Wickets taken) – Sandeep Lamichhane (Sylhet Sixers), Mashrafe Mortaza (Rangpur Riders)
Most Sixes – David Warner (Sylhet Sixers), Rilee Rossouw (Rangpur Riders)
Team Scores Batting First – Sylhet Sixers 130+, Rangpur Riders 135+
*NB these predictions may be changed nearer the start of the match once the final starting teams have been announced and we will be running ‘In–Play’ features soon, so stay tuned.
©Cricket World 2019