Web Desk :
Bas de Leede’s fine three-wicket spell and a responsible unbeaten knock of 31 from Dewald Brevis lead Samp Army’s march to the top of the table defeating New York Strikers by six wickets. The 28th match and last league round match saw Samp Army display their tight bowling strength to bowl out New York Strikers for a paltry 70 runs in 9.4 overs.
New York tried to put up a fight back through Ali Khan’s two-wicket spell for 16 but that wasn’t enough to prevent Samp Army from winning the match with 18 balls to spare. Brevis’ unbeaten 31 came off 18 balls with five boundaries.
Samp Army will take on New York Strikers in the first qualifier in the first match while third-placed Delhi Bulls will take on fourth-placed Bangla Tigers in the eliminator. Qualifier two will be the last match of the day between the winner of the eliminator and the runner-up of Qualifier 1.
Samp Army bt New York Strikers by 6 wkts. New York Strikers 70 in 9.4 overs (Bas de Leede 3 for 13, Jake Lintott 2 for 16, Qais Ahmad 2 for 12) Samp Army 73 for 4 in 7 overs (Dewald Brevis 31n.o, Ali Khan 2 for 16)
Player of the Match: Bas de Leede
Samp Army bowl out New York Strikers for 70
Morrisville Samp Army won the toss and elected to field. The contest got off to an exciting start with Bas de Leede getting New York Strikers star opener Rahmanullah Gurbaz caught and bowled while attempting a pull shot that ballooned in the air. They also lost their consistent batsman Muhammad Waseem to the fourth ball of that over when he drove straight into the hands of skipper Moeen Ali for 4.
Muhammad Irfan bowled a tight second over giving away six runs. The first ball of the third over by Karim Janat was hit to the boundary by Niroshan Dickwella. That was the only shot that crossed the boundary in that over. Dickwella hit Jake Lintott for a six off his fourth delivery but perished to the last ball of that over for 18 caught by Ibrahim Zadran at deep mid-wicket.
Qais Ahmad’s fifth over was sensational as he clean bowled Mark Deyal with the third ball for a duck. Deyal went for a reverse sweep and missed. With the next ball, Qais also trapped Odean Smith leg before for a duck. At the half way mark, New York Strikers were struggling at 36 for 5.
In the sixth over too, two wickets fell. Lintott got Asif Ali caught by Dewald Brevis for 9. Off the last ball of that over, Chamika Karunaratne got run out for 1. Nothing went right for New York Strikers as their next man Lasith Croospulle too got caught by Basil Hameed off De Leede for the fourth duck of the innings.
UAE’s CP Rizwan hit Qais for a boundary and reached double figures. He also hit Salman Irshad’s first ball of the night over for a boundary but fell to the next ball caught by Brevis at mid-off for 17.
Pollard hit the third ball of the last over from Irfan for a six over long-on but fell to the fourth ball, caught and bowled for 14 off a top edge to a pull shot. New York was thus bowled out for 70 in 9.4 overs.
Dewald Brevis carries Army to the target
Samp Army’s chase too began on a shaky note as George Scrimshaw got opener Ibrahim Zadran caught by Deyal in the covers off the second ball of the first over. Brewis hit the third ball to mid-wicket for a boundary and seven runs came off that over. Ali Khan got Samp Army’s wicketkeeper batsman Karunaratne at mid-off for 4. Brevis picked two consecutive boundaries of the last two deliveries of that over.
Scrimshaw bowled another tight third over giving away only five runs. Ali Khan struck again in the fourth over to get De Leede out, caught by Waseem at deep point, for 6. That over too yielded only five runs. UAE’s Basil Hameed hit Odean Smith’s fifth ball for a six over deep point. At the half way stage, Samp Army needed 26 runs from the remaining 30 balls.
Waseem, who bowled the sixth over, got Hameed caught by Karunaratne at long-on for 9 and gave away just four runs. The match looked heading towards a close finish with Moeen Ali joining Brevis carrying the hopes of his team.
Brevis picked two boundaries off Smith’s 7th over. Ali too hit another three in the same over to win the match with three overs to spare.