Sharjah: Northern Warriors conquered Pakhtoons through an intense battle in front of a packed Sharjah Cricket Stadium, and emerge as the champions of the second edition of the T10 League.
Rovman Powell, through an unbeaten 61 off 25 balls studded with four sixes and eight boundaries, gave Warriors a formidable total of 140 for 3 and restricted Pakhtoons to 118 for 7 to avenge their defeat in the first qualifier on Saturday and win by 22 runs.
For Pakhtoons, except for Andre Fletcher (37) and Shafiqullah Shafiq (26), none of the other batsmen rose to the challenge.
Darren Sammy, the two times-world cup winning captain of the Warriors team lifted the trophy as Robin Singh, their coach earned the honour of being the coach with the magic touch in T10 League. He was also coach of the Kerala Knights, the winners of the first edition of this league.
Pakhtoons won the toss and elected to bowl. India’s RP Singh, who opened the bowling , was hit for a six by opener Pooran to mid-wicket. Mohammad Irfan clean bowled opener Lendl Simmons for 5 off the first ball of the second over. The intense battle for domination backed by a vociferous crowd, created the right atmosphere of a final.
Pooran hit Sohail Khan for a boundary to long-off while Powell hit two sixes, one to deep mid-wicket and another over long-on. Left-arm spinner Sharafuddin Ashraf, who bowled the third over was greeted by Pooran through a six over long on but trying to lift the next delivery too for a six, got caught by Sohail Khan at long on for 18. Powell thrashed the next two deliveries from Ashraf for boundaries and also hit him for a six off the last ball.
Skipper Shahid Afridi introduced himself for the fifth over but Powell hit him for two boundaries to take 11 runs off the over.
Andre Russell, who was watching Pooran do all the hitting, opened out and hit Liam Dawson for a six to long off and a straight boundary and also a six to long.
He also straight drove the fourth delivery for a boundary. Dawson’s fifth delivery too sailed for a six to deep-midwicket.
The last ball escaped going to the boundary but 27 runs came off that over. Hitting Afridi for a six and a boundary, Russell steered his team past the 100 run mark by the seventh over.
The pair put on 62 runs off 3.2 overs when Afridi had Russell, who hit 38 runs from 12 balls, caught by Irfan.
Powell hit Irfan for six and three consecutive boundaries in the 8th over to reach his half century in 18 balls. Skipper Darren Sammy and Powell added 38 runs in the last 3.2 overs .
Chasing the stiff target, Pakhtoons inform opener Andre Fletcher cracked Khary Pierre for a boundary. In the second over Chris Green clean bowled Cameron Delport for 3. Fletcher hit Russell for three sixes in the third over. Shafiqullah Shafiq square cut Wahab Riaz for a six and Pakhtoons scored 50 in four overs.
Green who was re-introduced for the sixth over, took the prize wicket of Fletcher for 37. Pakhtoons needed 76 off 26 balls at this stage.
Skipper Afridi, who took the game away from Warriors in the qualifier, joined Shafiq. He hit Viljoen over cover for a six and swung the next into the crowd for another six. Viljone clean bowled Afridi with his fifth ball for 17 and Colin Ingram too with the next ball to take the match away from Pakhtoons.
Northern Warriors bt Pakhtoons by 22 runs.
Northern Warriors 140 for 3 in 10 overs (Rovman Powell 61n.o, Andre Russell 38)
Pakhtoons 118 for 7 in 10 overs (Andre Fletcher 37, Shafiqullah Shafiq 26, Chris Green 2 for 11, Hardus Viljoen 2 for 24).