T-10 League

Samp Army overcome Chennai's brave fightback to win by 7 wickets

Online Desk

Online Desk
প্রকাশের তারিখ: 14:43 শুক্রবার, 01 ডিসেম্বর, 2023

|| CF DESK ||

Chennai Braves gave Samp Army the jitters before bowing to a seven-wicket defeat with one ball to spare in a hard fought seventh match of the Abu Dhabi T10 at the Zayed Cricket Stadium.

Braves, whose top order crumbled to 27 for 6, fought back through their skipper Charith Asalanka (31) and UAE’s Aayan Afzal Khan (19n.o) to put on a 49 runs partnership for the seventh wicket. This gave them a total of 97 for 7.

Braves bravely battled to check Samp Army’s run flow despite fine knocks from openers Andries Gous (43) and Faf du Plessis (31). The match hung in balance till the fifth ball of the last over when Najibulllah Zadran hit a six to win the match.

Chennai Braves top order crash

Chennai Braves won the toss and elected to bat. They got off to a shock start losing opener Jason Roy, who had cracked an unbeaten 84 in their previous match to Team Abu Dhabi, for 1. He played Jason Holder on to his wicket. In the next over, one-drop George Munsey got out for a duck to Karim Janat. Munsey hit high to Holder in the covers.

Opener Kobe Herft hit Qais Ahmed for a six and a boundary in the third over but fell to the last ball of that over for 20. Holder caught him at long-on through a diving catch. Moeen Ali struck twice in the fifth over. Chennai Braves first lost Stephen Eskinazi run out for 4. Ali then got Mohammad Nabi caught by Muhammad Irfan at short fine leg for a duck. He also removed Kai Smith, caught by Hatzoglou at deep mid-wicket for a duck.

At the half way mark, the Chennai Braves score board read a pathetic 27 for 6. UAE’s Ayaz Afzal Khan picked a boundary off Hatzoglou to push the score to 36 by the end of the sixth over. Skipper Charith Asalanka hit Moeen Ali for two consecutive boundaries and a six to see their team total go past the 50-run mark. Aslanka did not spare Salman Irshad too who bowled the eighth over to hit a six to long leg off the first ball and another six over mid-wicket off the last ball.

Afzal picked a boundary off Karim Janat but Asalank got caught by Qais Ahmad to the fourth ball of that over at deep mid-wicket for 31. His 13-ball knock had two boundaries and three sixes. He had put on 49 runs for the seventh wicket with Afzal. In the last over, Bhanuka Rajapaksa hit Salman Irshad for a six over long-off and a boundary to backward square leg, and remain unbeaten on 15.

Afzal Khan remained unconquered on 19. For a team that was tottering at 27 for 6, it was remarkable that they could post three runs short of the 100 run mark.

Army’s quick start and tense finish

Samp Army’s march towards the target began with opener Andries Gous and Faf du Plessis picking one boundary each from the first two overs. Du Plessis then elegantly pulled Obed McCoy for a boundary in the third over. Gous picked his second boundary off Sam Cook. Plessis hit the first six of the innings off Cook over long on. He hit two more sixes off Afzal Khan to mid-wicket to take the score past the 50 runs mark by the fifth over.

Mohammad Nabi ended De Plessis’s knock by having him caught by Munsey at long-off for 31. His knock off 16 balls had one boundary and three sixes. Moeen Ali joined Gouis but lasted only six balls to score eight runs before being bowled by Junaid Siddique.

With thirty runs needed off the last 18 balls, Gous hit Nabi for a six to long-on. Najibullah Zadran joined Gous and made it 17 runs off 12 balls. Gous then hit Afzal Khan for his second six, but got run out to a fine direct throw from Asalanka at covers for 43. His knock off 26 balls had three boundaries and two sixes.

With eight runs needed off the last over, McCoy began the last over with a wide and then bowled a dot ball. A slower ball yielded no run and the third ball yielded just one run. Off the fourth they got only a bye. When the crowd moved towards the edge of their seats, Zadran hit a six to mid-wicket and won the match for his team with one ball to spare.

Brief scores:
Samp Army bt Chennai Braves by 7 wkts. Chennai Braves 97 for 7 in 10 overs (Kobe Herft 20, Charith Aslanka 31, Karim Janat 2 for 15, Moeen Ali 2 for 17) Samp Army 99 for 3 in 9.5 overs (Andries Gous 43, Faf du Plessis 31)

Player of the Match: Andries Gous