(CMC) — Superstar Chris Gayle announced his arrival in the Bangladesh Premier League like only he can, hitting a boundary-studded cameo to help propel Chittagong Vikings to a nine-wicket win over Rangpur Riders here yesterday.
The left-hander blasted 40 from 26 deliveries in his first innings of the tournament as Vikings easily chased down a target of 125 at Shere Bangla National Stadium, with 24 balls to spare.
Gayle, who has not played any form of international cricket in three months, dominated a 70-run opening partnership with Bangladesh stroke-maker Tamim Iqbal whose Man-of-the-Match unbeaten 62 came from 48 balls.
The 37-year-old Gayle started slowly with his first 13 deliveries yielding just seven runs, but he quickly found his strike to entertain with two fours and four sixes.
He issued his first warning with back-to-back sixes in the seventh over off off-spinner Sohag Gazi and followed up with another pair of sixes in the ninth over off leg-spinner Shahid Afridi, before finally succumbing to the same bowler.
Earlier, Riders had scrambled to 124 for six after opting to bat first, with opener Soumya Sarkar top-scoring with 26 from 21 balls.
Vikings are third in the tables on 10 points, two adrift of leaders Dhaka Dynamites and the second-placed Khulna Titans, both on 12 points.