Delhi wins "bowl-out" after thrilling finish
The 31st match of the ICL 20s Indian Championship featured the ICL Domestic champions & hosts Chandigarh Lions, take on north Indian rivals Delhi Giants, at Tau Devi Lal stadium, Panchkula.
The cricket thriller that had a capacity crowd glued to their seats right till midnight & saw 400 runs scored, saw the Delhi Giants win the match in a bowl out against their arch rivals Chandigarh. Monish Mishra was declared man of the match for brilliant knock of 81.
Earlier in the evening Andrew Hall, won the toss and elected to bat. The Chandigarh side opened with TP Singh & Sarabjit who got off to a good start taking the score to 26 for no loss at the end of the 3rd over. Both openers were going great guns playing some wonderful strokes against a very good bowling line up.
The fifty partnership for the opening wicket came about in only 28 balls in the 5th over. TP Singh was looking in ominous touch conducting an absolute carnage on the Delhi bowling bringing his half century in off only 22 balls ;laced with 10 fours and 1 six; in the 7th over.
The half way mark of the innings had the Chandigarh Lions handsomely placed at 95 for no loss. TP Singh brilliant innings of 65 off 31 balls came to an end in the 11th over; credited to a brilliant catch in the outfield by Monish Mishra off Benkenstein; ending the 98 run partnership for the first wicket. The talented Southpaw’s innings included 11 fours and 1 six.
Singh’s wicket brought ICL’s new induction Graeme Hick in the middle who got into the act right away taking the score to 130 at the 13th over mark. Sarabjit too brought about his half century in 15th over batting at 54 off 46 balls at the 15th over mark, making a strong case for his selection into the ICL India team for the forthcoming ICL 20s World Series.
Nixon leading the side in the absence of Atapattu, brought on his premiere spearhead Shane Bond in the 17th over, who put the plugs on the Chandigarh batting Juggernaut with the wickets of Hick & Vincent of consecutive balls. Murtaza came back for his second spell in the next over packing back the dangerous Sarabjit for a well made 60 runs off 43 balls; including 4 fours and 3 sixes.
Some top class bowing from Bond & Murtaza in the death overs did manage to reduce the huge damage inflicted by the top order Chandigarh batting. The Chandigarh side finally folded their innings at a mammoth 200 /7 in their allotted 20 overs. In an otherwise lackluster bowling performance the only bowlers to stand out in the Delhi line up were Murtaza & Bond who ended with 2 wickets a piece.
The Delhi Giants chase came in the form of Gunawardene & Mishra who got onto the job right away playing some attacking strokes right across the park. Mishra was especially severe on the Chandigarh bowling taking the score to 68 for no loss in just 5 overs, brining the match alive & kicking. A spanking four off Hall brought about Monish Mishra’s well deserved half century coming off only 24 balls in the 6th over; laced with 8 fours & 2 mighty sixes.
The 100 partnership between the two openers came off in only the 9th over, giving back their arch north Indian rivals Chandigarh, the same treatment they received during their stint in the field.
Rajesh Sharma finally ended the marathon partnership of 126 runs, with the wicket of Mishra, out for a brilliant innings of 81 coming off only 44 balls including 10 fours and 3 sixes, in the 12th over. With 5 overs to go the match was fascinatingly poised with Delhi needing 47 runs off 30 balls and 9 wickets in hand, placed at 154/1.
15 runs off the experienced Andrew Hall’s 18th over had the match “Even-Stevens” at the penultimate over stage with Delhi, needing 17 runs off the last 2 overs. The wicket of the pedigreed Abbas Ali off the last ball of the 19th over who came up with a crucial cameo of 22 runs off only 10 balls, took the match to the last over with Delhi needing 9 runs of it.
A four of the last ball by Paul Nixon took the score at levels at 200/4 to take the match to a ball out. In the end 2 hits on the stumps by Delhi to nil from Chandigarh saw the Delhi Giants emerge winners.