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Boje leads Heroes to easy win

The Hyderabad Heroes cruised to a comfortable 7 wicket victory over the Chennai Superstars thanks to fifties from Justin Kemp and Nicky Boje.

South African all-rounder Justin Kemp blasted a quickfire fifty, putting on XX runs with his compatriot Nicky Boje (61 off 52 balls) to guide Hyderabad Heroes to a comfortable victory over Chennai Superstars by seven wickets in their T-20 match of the ICL tournament.

Coming together with the Heroes in some trouble at three down for fifty plus runs, the South African duo smashed the Chennai bowlers to all parts of the ground. Boje kept turning the single over while Kemp wound up time and again to send the ball soaring to all corners of the ground, hitting four sixes and five boundaries. And Kemp (66 off 42) brought up the duo's hundred partnership and victory for the Heroes with a six off the first ball of the last over bowled by the Superstars.

Kemp, who brought up his fifty with a straight six of Vasanth Saravanan, was lucky to be dropped by Sri Lankan Russell Arnold off Thiru Kumaran. He had smashed a six and a four in the same over but missed a slower one and skied it to the deep mid-off region where Sri Lankan Russell Arnold dropped it. The burly right hander showed that he was not just about big shots as he used deft paddled and caressed the balls to various parts of the boundary.

Boje, who made a name for himself in the South African one-day squad with some robust pinch-hitting during his chequered international career, showed why he is considered an asset in the shorter version of the game by playing some handsome shots. He put on fifty runs with Ambati Rayadu (15) and put the Heroes on track by smashing 17 runs in the fourth over bowled by Kumaran and another 13 from over number six bowled by Ian Harvey.

The home team could not have had a more awful start as both their openers - Anirudh Singh and Jimmy Maher were back in the hutch in the very first over. While Maher was run out, attempting a quick single to mid-off, Singh snicked medium pacer Shabbir Ahmed's rising delivery to Harvey in the slips.

The Superstars built their innings around two good scores by former Australian all-rounder Harvey and former India batsman Hemang Badani. While Harvey, who scored 49 runs off 37 deliveries put on 49 for the opening wicket with left-hander Ganapathi Vignesh, Badani made a blistering 37 off just 18 deliveries that included two towering sixes and as many boundaries.

Though the visitors started strongly, they failed to capitalize on the good opening stand, losing quick wickets to some tight bowling by the spinners Nike Boje and Chris Harris. Boje, who conceded just seven runs off his first three overs, was clubbed for a six and a four by Badani towards the end. The other wicket-takers for Hyderabad Heroes were Abdul Razzaq and Justin Kemp, who snared two victims each.

The Superstars, who were the champions in the last leg of the ICL, have been outplayed by their opponents twice in the ongoing tournament. They lost to the Mumbai Champs in their last encounter and were outplayed by the Hyderabad Heroes in this one.

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