RAIN DENIES THRILLING RUN CHASES AS TWO MATCHES TIED ON THE SEVENTH DAY
Abu Dhabi, UAE – 20 November 2019: Rain interrupted play on a dramatic second day of the day of the Super League stage of the Aldar Properties Abu Dhabi T10, as two matches were abandoned due to bad weather, but fans still enjoyed a wide variety of great shots and big hitting throughout the day.
Despite another brilliant batting performance from Chris Lynn, points were shared between the Maratha Arabians and the Karnataka Tuskers in the opening game of the day, as well as between Team Abu Dhabi and Deccan Gladiators.
Match Report 1: Maratha Arabians vs. Karnataka Tuskers
The Maratha Arabians opened their first game of the Super League Stage with Chris Lynn and Adam Lyth working to craft a magnificent partnership and posting a score of 130 to chase. However, the descent of rain onto Zayed Cricket Stadium led to the abandonment of the match, denying the Karnataka Tuskers a thrilling chase.
Lynn and Lyth continued their rich vein of form, and despite the loss of opener Hazratullah on the first delivery of the innings, the pair continued to survey the field, picking out gaps and expertly guiding a flurry of boundaries to the rope to keep the scoreboard progressing steadily in the first few overs.
As Hashim Amla tinkered with his fielding setup, the Arabians’ batsmen hit top gear as they overpowered the opposition bowlers, smashing an incredible five sixes in nine deliveries. A visibly frustrated Ahmad Raza was shown no mercy by Lyth, who plundered 23 runs from his over including three astronomical sixes that took him to his half century in only 19 deliveries. Zadran finally outsmarted Lyth, with a quicker delivery that bounced up sharply, forcing him to chip the ball to Nathan Rimmington at slip. He trundled off, disappointment etched on his face as he let an opportunity to score a big individual total slip away. Chris Lynn slammed his team into 120s with blistering aggression and speed that the Karnataka Tuskers had no reply for. In spite of the effort of both bowlers and batsmen, the two teams could not overcome the weather, and the covers were pulled on at the commencement of the innings’ break, denying Hashim Amla and his men the opportunity to chase down the total, on a pitch that is providing lots of dramatic and exciting cricketing action.
Karnataka Tuskers’ UAE paceman Ahmed Raza said after the game: “We would have liked another two points, but you can’t control the weather, so we have to walk away with one point. We’re not in a very bad position at this point, as we now end up on three points, and if you look at the tables, quite a few teams are on three, and just a couple at six. If we win our next two games, we’ll be through to the next round.”
Despite the lack of a result, Raza highlighted the importance of the Aldar Properties Abu Dhabi T10 for the development of cricket talent in the UAE saying: “This is a great opportunity for young players looking to break into the UAE national team, to play in front of millions of people with international stars like Dwayne Bravo. There is a massive potential for them to learn from the seniors in the team and develop their game alongside world-class players.”
Match Report 2 – Bangla Tigers vs. Northern Warriors
Fans were anxious to see cricketing action after the previous match between the Karnataka Tuskers and the Maratha Arabians had been abandoned due to rain. Bangla Tigers’ Rillee Rossouw and Andre Fletcher, who had been placed into bat by the Northern Warriors, did not fail to disappoint, using their strong opening partnership to power balls to boundary ropes. Both Tigers were sprinting for the team’s half century, before their dismissal at the hands of Australia’s Chris Wood and West Indies’ Rayad Emrit.
The Warriors had rumbled the Tigers, and Emrit’s second wicket of the night of Thomas Moores brought consternation and then commiseration amongst the Bangla boys. Ingram’s wicket in the sixth over left the Tigers on a tricky 54. Captain Perera continued with his low figures from this series, posting 3 off 3 balls before being caught at deep long on. David Weise tried to will some spirit into the game, but his wicket for 9 left the Tigers posting 65 for 8 at the start of the eighth over. The Tigers mustered a final few runs with the big hitting of South African Robbie Frylinck, but set a low 102 to beat for the Northern Warriors.
The Warriors began a confident chase, with Lendl Simmons and Nicholas Pooran looking to bring a fighting stance to open for the men in maroon. Weise, however, struck with the wicket of Pooran in the second over for 8, and then Simmons also followed his fellow West Indian back to the changing room nine balls later. Andre Russell and Sri Lankan Asela Gunaratne sought to regroup following the losses of their openers, but the power of Liam Plunkett and Qais Ahmad left the pair struggling to trickle past the boundary rope.
The Tigers’ bowlers pushed the pressure on the embattled Warriors, who were struggling to find distance. Russell sought to deliver boundaries, taking 18 runs from Frylinck in the eighth over, but Captain Perera tore into Russell, with a catch being delivered courtesy of Liam Plunkett at extra cover. Sam Billings and Darren Sammy desperately sought for the remaining 13 runs they required in the final over, but Weise kissed the top of Sammy’s off stump, dismissing the Captain for 1. Chris Green sought to fight the rising odds, but was caught at deep backward point for a duck. Emrit and Billings sought to take the Warriors’ the extra distance, but were six runs short from victory, allowing the Bangla Tigers to enjoy the results of a brilliantly executed bowling attack.
Man of the Match, Robbie Frylinck, commented on the Bangla Tigers’ performance: “It’s a fantastic victory for us against a team with so many big name players. The rain did affect the wicket a little bit – some of the deliveries skidded on, and others got stuck in the pitch, which made it a lot more difficult to get those shots away. In tough conditions, that makes the victory much sweeter.”
Captain of the losing Northern Warriors, Darren Sammy, said: “It wasn’t our day in the end. I think they bowled better than us through the middle overs and we couldn’t chase the total. It wasn’t a difficult total to chase – we showed that yesterday – but we just didn’t find the momentum to carry us through, and ended one or two boundaries short. For the next game, I am going to tell all the boys that it’s time to go hard or go home”
Match Report 3 – Deccan Gladiators vs. Team Abu Dhabi
Team Abu Dhabi were looking for a strong performance to boost their chances of advancing to the semi-finals as they came up against Shane Watson’s Deccan Gladiators.
Captain Moeen Ali was called into action early on, as Avishka Fernando lost his wicket, and was intent from the start to thrill the fans, hitting some incredible shots, including a beautifully lifted cut shot for six, seeking to build some early momentum for his team alongside batting partner Luke Wright. Deccan Gladiators managed to claw a wicket back after Wright was dismissed shortly before Team Abu Dhabi reached 50 runs, with his replacement Ben Madsen quickly adjusting to the pace of the game, reflecting his Captain’s approach with some humongous sixes and deft, if at times fortunate, boundaries.
The pair continued to frustrate the Gladiators’ bowling attack with some disciplined yet elegant strokes, before Ali fell to a standard delivery by his fellow Englishman Mason Crane, miscuing an attempted pull shot to Ben Cutting at deep extra cover leaving his team 91/3 after 8 overs. Lewis Gregory and Madsen batted valiantly through a fiery final over bowled by West Indian Sheldon Cottrell. However, the pace bowler found his mark, dismissing Madsen for 29 and treated fans to his iconic salute celebration. Team Abu Dhabi closed their innings having posted a respectable 118 runs to defend.
Deccan Gladiators began their run chase with the highly entertaining Mohammad Shahzad smashing a couple of boundaries from the very first two balls of the innings, with his hallmark aggressive nature quickly endearing him to the fans in Abu Dhabi. With Watson merely a spectator at the other end, Shahzad continued to find the boundaries, accelerating to 24 from 8 balls into the second over. Shane Watson’s disappointing tournament continued as he was dismissed for a solitary run, playing around a straight delivery that rearranged his timber, before rain interrupted play for the second time in the game. A strong start from the Deccan Gladiators promised a thrilling run chase, but unfortunately weather conditions did not permit the match to find its own conclusion and it was abandoned, ending in a tie.
Speaking on his team’s performance, Captain Moeen Ali said: “We still have a slim chance to qualify, and if things go our way in the next couple of games, and we perform to the standards that we know we are capable of like we did in the limited overs we managed to play today then we will be ok”.
The eighth day of matches will open with bottom of the table Delhi Bulls locking horns with third place Maratha Arabians in a must win match for Eoin Morgan’s men. Karnataka Tuskers will take to the field against Team Qalandars, with the game due to kick off at 17:45. The night’s action will wrap up with the clash between Deccan Gladiators and Northern Warriors.