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Warriors march to 8 wicket victory

The 25th match of the ICL20s Indian Championship featured hosts Chandigarh Lions, take on tournament debutants Dhaka Warriors at the Tau Devi Lal stadium Panchkula.

In the end it was a strong all round performance from the Dhaka Warriors that saw them romp home to a comfortable 8 wicket victory. Shahriar Nafees declared man of the match for brilliant unbeaten knock of 73 runs.

Earlier in the evening Dhaka Warriors won the toss and elected to field. The Chandigarh side, coming into the match with a resurgent win in their previous encounter against the formidable Royal Bengal Tigers, was off to a solid start with TP Singh going on the offensive right away scoring 15 runs off the first over from Sharif.

Dhaka however struck back with Sharif packing back the dangerous TP Singh in the 3rd over, cutting short his promising innings of 13 runs off 8 balls laced with three boundaries to the fence.

Tapash Baisya eventful fourth over brought serious trouble for the Chandigarh Lions with Sarabjit and Lou Vincent (run out) packed back on the Lions score of 29. At the end of the 5th over the Chandigarh Lions were precariously placed on 37/3. Bashar turned to his premiere spinner Rafique in the seventh over who struck immediately trapping Manish Sharma to reduce the Chandigarh score card to 46/4 at that stage of the match.

The 11th over mark had the Chandigarh side consolidating their innings at 75/4 and captain Hall & Chetan Sharma battling it out in the middle.

The introduction of Mosharraf Hossain in the 13th over yielded results immediately, ending the 37 partnership for the 5th wicket with the wicket of Chetan Sharma who scored 27 runs off 27 balls including three boundaries. With 5 overs to go the Chandigarh side was placed at 98/5 needing some major momentum to post a competitive total.

Mosharraf scalped his second victim of the match with the big wicket of Andrew Hall in the crucial 17th over to give the Dhaka side a clear upper-hand at that stage of the match. Hallís laborious knock was worth 29 runs off 28 balls with only one solitary boundary.

Overall it was a disciplined effort in the field from the Dhaka boys making stroke- play difficult for the Chandigarh Lions. In the end a useful knock of 30 runs off 22 balls; laced with four boundaries, by the young Bipul Sharma saw the Chandigarh Lions fold their innings at a respectable 137/9 in their allotted 20 overs. For the Dhaka side it was again their two premier spinners Rafique & Hossain who stood out amongst the bowlers, taking five off the nine wickets to fall.

The Dhaka Warriors chase got off to a steady start with both Nazimuddin & Nafees looking in good touch and racing off to 29 for no loss at the end of the first four overs. Both openers powered their way to a 53 run partnership in the 9th over when Bipul Sharma broke the partnership with the wicket of Nazimuddin for a well made 23. Hall introduced his second spinner Rajesh Sharma in the 10th over who started off with a fine over troubling both the Dhaka batsmen.

At the half way mark of their innings the Dhaka side was right on target at 59 /1 needing another 79 runs off 60 balls and nine wickets in hand. Bipul however had other ideas scalping his second big wicket in form of the dangerous Ahmed; out cheaply for five to bring the Chandigarh side right back in the match in the 11th over.

Hall turned to his spinners, Rajesh & Bipul followed by the experienced TP Singh who were successful in strangulating the scoring rate in the crucial middle overs. However Nafees was playing the sheath-anchor role to perfection at the other end brining his second ICL fifty in the 14th over off 46 balls; laced with 7 fours and the lone six of the match till that stage.

Kapali too got into the act carrying on his brilliant form throughout the tournament ably supporting the impressive Nafees. At the end of the 15thover the Dhaka side was right on top at 99/2 needing only another 39 runs off 30 balls. In the end an unbeaten seventy six run partnership between Kapali ( 32 runs) & Nafees ( 73 runs) for the 3rd wicket saw the Dhaka Warriors romp home to an easy 8 wicket victory with over 2 overs to spare.

The star batsman for the Dhaka Warriors was Shahriar Nafees whose unbeaten knock of 73 runs off 60 balls included 10 fours and 1 six.

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