DHAKA: A Bangladeshi cricket team conceded 92 runs in just four balls to deliberately lose a match in what they called a protest over biased umpiring in their league.
In the 50-over match of Dhaka Second Division League on Tuesday, Lalmatia Club were dismissed for just 88 off 14 overs before opponents Axiom Cricketers reached 92-0 off just four balls.
Lalmatia’s opening bowler Sujon Mahmud sent down 13 wides and three no-balls in the first over and all of them raced to the boundary, costing his side a further 80 runs.
Axiom opener Mustafizur Rahman struck three fours in four legitimate boundaries to take his side home in just 0.4 overs to complete a 10-wicket win in the capital’s City Club ground.
Lalmatia Club secretary Adnan Rahman said his player bowled the wides and no-balls deliberately as a mark of protest for poor umpiring.
“Throughout the league we were subjected to poor umpiring,” Adnan said.
The secretary alleged the umpires did not even allow the team captain to see the coin after toss.
“They tossed the coin and said: Okay you bat. Very soon we found our team had lost five wickets for just 11 runs inside seven overs,” he said.
Another club official claimed to AFP on condition of anonymity that umpires were biased against Lalmatia throughout the season, as at least one of its leading lights is linked to the main opposition party.
The match angered the Bangladesh Cricket Board, which organises club cricket in Dhaka. The president of the BCB is a lawmaker in the ruling party and is close to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.
“This is very unusual … so many wides and no-balls,” BCB spokesman Jalal Yunus told AFP.
“We have asked match officials to submit a report in this regard. Once we’ve received the report, we will launch a formal investigation.”