Hyderabad cruise to 9 wicket victory
The 34th match of the ICL 20s Indian Championship featured the clash of the heavyweights; Royal Bengal Tigers & Hyderabad Heroes at ICL's sparkling new facility Sardar Patel stadium Ahmedabad.
In the end it was a brilliant all round display from the defending champions outclassing their opponents in all departments of the game to register a nine wicket victory and move on top of the table. IS Reddy was declared man of the match for his wonderful spell of spin bowling, scalping three Bengal wickets.
Earlier in the evening Chirs Harris, won the toss and elected to field, taking the due factor into consideration. Sahabuddin struck early trapping the inform Deep Dasgupta LBW in the 2nd over, with the scorecard reading 5 runs for the Bengal batting.
The Hyderabad seamers were making full use of the helpful conditions not allowing the formidable Bengal top order any leeway. Sahabuddin scalped his second victim of the match in the 4th over with the big wicket of Hamish Marshall out for a usual low score of 9 against his name. The 5 over mark had the experienced duo of Rohan Gavaskar & McMillan work on some resurrection for the Royal Bengal Tigers at 35/2.
The repair act however did not last long with Sahabuddin packing back Gavaskar, in the 6th over to leave the Royal Bengal Tigers in some trouble at 40/3. Harris introduced Absolem & Boje as first change bowlers who kept a tight leash on the Bengal batsmen & in turn the scoring rate.
Boje struck in the 10th over with the wicket of the opposition skipper McMillan, ending his fighting knock of 31 runs off 26 balls. The half way mark of their innings had the Royal Bengal Tigers struggle at 59/4.
It was some lackluster batting in the crucial middle overs from the Royal Bengal Tigers, especially their swashbuckling all rounder Lance Klusener who just could not get any momentum to his innings. His laborious innings of 21 off 31 balls came to an end with a stumping off IS Reddy in the 16th over.
The famed Hyderabad spin trio of Boje, Reddy & Harris were proving a bit too handful for the Bengal lower middle order who folded their innings at a partly 111 all out in 19.4 overs. The clinical bowling performance from the defending champions saw Sahabuddin & Reddy emerge the most successful bowlers picking three wickets a piece.
The Hyderabad chase got off to a shaky start with Tarafdar striking in the 4th over, packing back the dangerous Razzaq for 7. The stage was set for the two young domestics Ibrahim Khaleel, opening the innings in place of a disposed Jimmy Maher & Ambati Rayudu, racing off to 36 at the 6th over mark.
Both batsmen were looking in great touch, giving full display of their batting talent; brining up their fifty partnership, off only 36 balls in the 9th over.
The half way mark of their innings had the defending champions handsomely placed at 73/1, needing only another 39 runs off 60 balls; at less than 4 runs per over. A magnificent six over long on brought about Khaleel's maiden ICL fifty sending a strong reminder to the selectors for reclaiming his place in the coveted ICL-India team.
Khaleel's fifty came off came of 46 balls and was laced with 6 fours and 1 six. In the end it was a clinical batting display that saw the defending champions romp home to a nine victory in only the 16th over.