At the end of the sixth BPL season, ESPNcricinfo looks at the most talked-about issues about the tournament
The big stars
First-timers AB de Villiers, Steven Smith, David Warner and Alex Hales, in addition to Andre Russell, Chris Gayle, Kieron Pollard, Shakib Al Hasan and Evin Lewis made it the most star-studded BPL of all time.
Warner batting right-handed against Rangpur Riders and the hundreds by de Villiers, Hales and Lewis were some of the most eye-catching moments. The starpower and quality of cricket this edition should serve as a massive boost to the organisers, who have often called the BPL the second-best T20 tournament behind the IPL.
The underdog stories
Everybody loves an underdog story and the BPL had room for that. Chittagong Vikings, a side assembled quite late in the lead-up to the tournament, were expected to just make up the numbers. But they reached the knockout stage on the back of several impressive wins.
After a dreary start, the tournament was given the kiss of life by rookie offspinner, Aliss Al Islam, as he took only the third hat-trick in BPL history in a four-wicket haul against Rangpur Riders. While being reported for a suspect action soon after was a slight damper, should he be able to correct it, Bangladesh have could have a mystery spinner at hand. Another talent in legspinner Minhajul Abedin Afridi got a few game after being a mere net-bowler for the Riders.
Shamsur Rahman, who last played for Bangladesh five years ago, became Comilla Victorians’ middle-order mainstay despite hardly being in the reckoning even in the domestic scene.
Shoddy broadcast quality
There were far too many errors throughout the tournament in the TV graphics and commentary. Tino Best mixed up names of teams and captains during the toss while one or two of the other commentators made a mess of calling simple plays. Thankfully, the inclusion of Danny Morrison and Dean Jones lifted the quality of commentary almost overnight.
The mistakes in graphics stood out more starkly. Khaled Ahmed’s age was shown as 119, wrong names of batsmen at the crease, incorrect scores and scoring equations became regular. In the second qualifier, the bowler who took the wicket, Mashrafe Mortaza, was mentioned as the batsman.
Was the BPL better than BBL?
In terms of star-power and shorter length of the tournament, the BPL is ahead of Australia’s BBL. There being no stipulation in a franchise’s budget is BPL’s distinct advantage, as well as allowing four overseas players in the line-up. BBL has a budget cap and allows only two overseas in the XI.
But the BBL’s pitches remain of superior quality, acting as a catalyst for exciting cricket. The BPL has to do far more to expand itself within Bangladesh, which would give the overused Mirpur pitches much-needed rest.