Knocks by Waseem, Pooran bring MIE their second victory against Warriors:
MI Emirates met Sharjah Warriors again in the 6th match of the league after superseding them by a 49-run victory in their opener. Moeen Ali and Kieron Pollard walk together towards the field for the toss and Pollard makes the right call. A while later the Sharjah Warriors’ openers were seen entering the ground with the Emirates’ fielders. Trent Boult held the responsibility of the new ball while Rahmanullah Gurbaz stood at the crease. Two back to back boundaries on the last two balls off the over gave Warriors the needed headstart.
Fazalhaq Farooqi shared the new ball with Trent and Pooran’s fumble behind the wickets got the Warriors an extra 4 runs. As Boult returned for his second over, Tom Kohler-Cadmore struck Boult for a six over his head. A thick edge from Rahmanullah’s bat earned him 4 runs but the Afghan batter’s luck did not stay by his side for long as on the next ball a catch by Andre Fletcher saw Rahmanullah departing back to the pavilion. In came Dawid Malan, who had to hear a huge appeal by the fielders in unison after Fazalhaq Farooqi struck his pads just a few balls after he came. However, the Umpire did not raise his finger.
Zahoor Khan replaced Boult and barring a boundary, which brought 4 runs on the board despite Fletcher’s efforts, his over went decent. Farooqi, however, failed to bowl anything near a decent over as he was smacked for 4 boundaries in an over by TKC. The power play ended with SW at 59/1 scoring at the rate of 9.83 RPO.
Dwayne Bravo took the ball to deliver the first over after power play and TKC welcomed him with a four through the covers. Imran Tahir was called in next to somehow stop the blitz of Kohler-Cadmore but all he managed to do was bowl a 5 over spell and hand the ball back to Zahoor Khan. A back of a length delivery by Zahoor was punished over the deep midwicket for a four by, any guesses who? Yes, TKC of course. Tahir came again to bowl his second but no wicket fell.
Malan, who was just standing and watching his fellow English, hitting the bowlers all over the ground could not stay and emulate him as Dwayne Bravo ended his knock after Pooran behind the sticks caught the ball which flew past Malan’s bat edging it. The Captain, Moeen Ali, answered the call and walked in to join TKC, who reached his half century in the same over.
Moeen Ali, after adding only a couple of runs to the team’s total, became Tahir’s victim as his miscued shot ended in the hands of Fletcher in the deep. Joe Denly was the new man in. Boult made a return to the attack and contributed to further recession of the run rate. A huge blow to the Sharjah Warriors came in Tahir’s over after his delivery slammed into the wickets behind TKC. Tom made his way back after a fiery innings as Mohammad Nabi entered the field.
Nabi’s stay, too, was shortened as Dwayne Bravo’s return got MI Emirates two wickets. First Nabi and then Denly were bowled out by the Trinidadian. Paul Walter and Alishan Sharafu, both playing their first match were now in the ground, trying to survive the Emirates’ bowlers. Completion of Farooqi’s 4 over spell ended 16 overs. The scoreboard at this point read 112/6.
Zahoor Khan was greeted on his return by a Walter straight four but he immediately reprimanded the SW batters by sending Alishan Sharafu back to the pavilion. Noor Ahmed treaded in to join Walter. Boult’s last over, without a wicket, ended his spell. Next, Bravo ran in to bowl his 4th over and was very near getting his 4th wicket too. Even the Umpire had raised his finger after Bravo’s ball nearly knocked off Noor Ahmed and raced to the boundary. However, the replay showed Noor edging the bat, thus ruling out any chance for an LBW. The ball was declared dead and so no boundary was added to the tally. Noor Ahmed, though, did not need any help to fetch himself boundaries as before the end of Bravo’s spell he handed two boundaries to him, taking the team’s total to 133 runs. A two-four last over by Zahoor made the tally equal to 146 runs, one run more than which was needed to score by the MI Emirates to win the match.
MI EMIRATES’ BATTING:
Will Smeed, with Mohammad Waseem at non-striker’s, waited for Naveen ul Haq to bowl his first of the day. A four hit towards point by Smeed was one of the first signs of life shown by the Emirates. Junaid Siddiqui, who came to bowl the 2nd over, was similarly presented with a pull shot four. The number of fours from 1 per over was doubled by Smeed as Naveen came to bowl his 2nd over. Paul Walter, playing his first match, bowled a somewhat economical over. However, Junaid Siddiqui got slapped for a four by Smeed’s blade in the next over. A screamer by TKC ended Smeed’s flurry and in walked Andre Fletcher. Watching Waseem hit Walter for a four, Fletcher too guided Walter’s ball towards for a four to open his accounts. Power play ended with Walter’s over as MIE stood at 45/1.
Noor Ahmed’s first over on the cracky pitch cost him only 3 runs. Joe Denly had to endure a punishment in his first over after he conceded 15 runs, thanks to a Fletcher six and a Waseem boundary. A confusion between both batters in the next over sent Fletcher back to the camp after which Nicholas Pooran entered the Arena to take care of things. Noor and Nabi bowled overs that the Warriors were in the position to afford but Walter’s expensive 15 run over raised MIE’s tally above 100 as the 13th over ended. Waseem’s attempt to hit the ball got him arrested by Nabi with Malan catching him in the next over. Waseem’s departure made way for Captain Kieron Pollard.
Pollard after 5 balls of silence struck Noor Ahmed, for a gigantic 101 meter, six which forced the umpires to bring in another ball to continue the game. Pooran, like his captain, thwacked Naveen ul Haq for 2 sixes next, further bringing down the asking rate. 16 overs ended and Junaid Siddiqui for his third over of the day entered into the attack. A boundary and a 96m six later, Junaid Siddiqui took Pollard’s wicket and shared a light moment with him as he walked out towards the pavilion.
The 17th over began with only 7 runs needed by MIE to win. The remaining runs were collected after Pooran hit a six, even bigger than Pollard’s 101m six. A wide by Walter ended the game and MI Emirates for the second time during this tournament thrashed Sharjah Warriors.