BPL: Can Shakib break the jinx of knockout stage today?

Shakib Al Hasan
Shamsul Haque

Shakib Al Hasan’s sheer dominance in Bangladesh Premier League (BPL) history is phenomenal as he became man of the tournament in four out of nine seasons. In this year’s BPL, he has written a comeback story despite a horrible start to the tournament. While the statistics prove Shakib’s supremacy in the country’s only franchise tournament, it is also true that his performance in knockout stage since the final of 2013 edition is rather lackluster.

The question is can he break the jinx of the knockout match today while facing Tamim Iqbal-led Fortune Barishal in the second qualifier or again fail to live up to expectation.

Shakib played in the knockout stage in the very first BPL. The tournament was not played in the play-off format in that edition. Shakib, who played for Khulna in that BPL, played a scintillating innings of unbeaten 86 runs off 41 balls while replying to Dhaka Gladiator’s 192-run target in second semi-final.

Although his team lost the match, Shakib’s innings against a strong bowling attack consisting of Mashrafe Mortaza, in-form Shahid Afridi and Saeed Ajmal was praised. Shakib could not do well with the ball claiming one wicket for 45 runs in four overs.

The star all-rounder played for Dhaka in the BPL’s 2013 edition. In the final match, Shakib played an innings of 41 off 29 balls. He did not get any wicket conceding 21 runs in three overs.

Since the 2013 season, Shakib has consistently failed to do well in knockout matches. BPL was not held in 2014 due to match fixing scandal. Shakib played for Rangpur After resumption of  the tournament in 2015. Shakib was hapless with the bat throughout the tournament and scored 13 runs from 10 balls in the second qualifier. He took one wicket for 29 runs. Rangpur lost to Barishal in that match by 5 wickets. Rangpur are going to play against Barishal again today in the second qualifier after nine long years. The only difference is that the name of Barishal franchise’s name has changed to Fortune Barishal from Barisal Bulls.

Shakib celebrates wicket of Tamim Iqbal in the league stage of ongoing BPL
Prothom Alo

Shakib again played for Dhaka again in 2016 and his team clichéd the title in that edition. However, Shakib failed again with the bat scoring 12 runs in seven balls in the final match. He took two wickets for 30 runs.

Shakib’s Dhaka again played the final in 2017. Shakib dropped a sitter of Chris Gayle in the final for Rangpur who later played pulverized Dhaka with unbeaten 146 off 69 balls. Shakib took a wicket conceding 26 runs in three overs and scored 26 off 16 balls.

In the eliminator in the next edition, Shakib was wicketless but economical conceding only 11 runs in four overs. With bat, he departed for a golden duck. In the second qualifier,  Shakib took one wicket for 29 runs and scored 23 runs in 20 balls.  In the Final, Tamim Iqbal played his famous innings of 141 off 61 balls while Shakib failed with both bat and ball. He took one wicket for 45 runs while scoring only 3 with the bat.

Shakib Al Hasan after winning player of the tournament i 2022 BPL
Prothom Alo

Shakib played in the final of BPL again in 2022. Shakib scored five fifties on the trot in the league stage but scored a run a ball 7 in the final. He claimed a wicket for 30 runs . Shakib’s Barishal lost to Comilla Victorians by 1 run.

Shakib did not bat in the eliminator in 2023 but took 2 wickets for 27 runs.
In the current edition, Shakib scored only 5 runs in the first qualifier against Comilla. His team Rangpur would desperately want Shakib to bring out his champion self in the do-or-die match against Barishal today. Star performers usually save their best for the important games. Can Shakib break the jinx of knockout today?