Raza shines on Dhaka Premier League bow

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Sikandar Raza

Zimbabwe cricket team all-rounder Sikandar Raza got his stint in Bangladesh’s Dhaka Premier League off to a positive start after impressing with both bat and ball as his team Shinepukur Cricket Club made a winning start on Wednesday.

Barely a day after his arrival in the subcontinent nation, Raza wasted no time in settling at his new club, Shinepukur Cricket Club as they beat former champions Mohameddan Cricket Club by 41 runs in their first match of List A competition.

The 35-year-old middle order batsman scored 42 runs to inspire Shinepukur to 250 for seven in their allotted 50 overs.

He was also impressive with the ball, claiming two wickets for 36 runs from his 10 overs as they reduced their opponents 209 all out.

Raza was on Sunday named the Player of the Tournament in the Pro50 Championship after a solid season for the losing finalists Southern Rocks.

His participation in the Dhaka Premier League comes just a month after he was involved in the Bangladesh Premier League with Khulna Tigers.

The Pakistan-born Zimbabwean star was signed by Shinepukur Cricket Cub as their sole overseas player for this year’s Dhaka Premier Division Cricket League.

Raza is one of the few foreign players taking part in Bangladesh’s only List A (50-over) competition after all the participating teams were allowed one overseas player.

The other overseas professionals include Pakistan all-rounder Mohammad Hafeez, Afghanistan middle-order batter Najibullah Zadran and seven other Indian cricketers Hanuma Vihari, Abhimanyu Easwaran, Parvez Rasool, Baba Aparajith, Ashok Menaria, Chirag Jani and Gurinder Singh.

The addition of several overseas players adds some heft to a competition that will largely be devoid of local star power, as the Bangladesh national team is currently in South Africa preparing for three ODIs and two Tests. With the tour set to end on April 12, it’s likely the country’s top players will only be available for the last two weeks of the competition.

The List A tournament started on Tuesday and will conclude on April 28, with 11 teams taking part.

The teams will play each other once in a round-robin format before the top six teams then play each other in the Super League once. The bottom two teams from the league phase will be relegated to Dhaka’s first division league.

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