Action from the match between Deccan Gladiators and Pune Devils on the first day of Abu Dhabi T10 on Thursday. Supplied
Mohammad Abdullah, Staff Reporter
Pune Devils captain Nasir Hossain expressed his delight after romping to a victory against a Kieron Pollard-led Deccan Gladiators in their opening match of the Abu Dhabi T10 on Thursday.
Devils, who are the new entrants in the tournament, produced a sterling all-round performance to pull off an emphatic seven-wicket win over Gladiators in the second match of the day.
Bangladesh off-spinner and Devils’ captain Nasir Hossain took 3 for 18 and Oman’s medium pacer Munis Ansari returned with a figure of 2 for 11 to restrict Gladiators to 104 for 5 in their allotted 10 overs.
“Obviously I am excited to start the campaign with a victory in my first T10 match as a captain. I am bit proud and happy at the same time,” said Hossain.
Hossain also revealed the strategy behind taking three wickets in the shortest format of the game that suits the batsmen best.
“I tried to keep it simple and pitched the ball in the right areas. I know in a T10 game, every batsman tries to play harsh so I tried to stick to basics,” he apprised.
He also expressed his satisfaction with the condition of the pitch. “It is a very good pitch for the batters. When I was bowling it was little bit creepy but I bowled according to the conditions and got the wickets,” added Hossain.
Hossain triggered the skid as he first clean bowled opener Sunil Narine off the second ball of the second over. He got rid of Afghanistan opener Mohamamd Shahzad off the last ball of the same over to reduce to Gladiators to 2-11. Shahzad top-edged to Asif Khan at square leg for 8.
Pollard was trapped in front of the stumps by Ansari off the first ball of the fourth over for just two runs. Hossain again sprang into action and had Prasanth Gupta caught at long-on. Ansari then went on to take another prize wicket of Cameron Delport, who slog hit to mid-wicket.
Ansari was elated after taking the prize wicket of West Indian great Pollard.
“Pollard’s dismissal is biggest wicket of my life since I started playing cricket. I am playing T10 for the first time.
“I was hoping to take the wicket of Pollard when I entered the match. When the captain tossed the ball to me, my aim was to get rid of the danger man in my first over. It was like a dream coming true,” said Ansari.
“I am very happy I cannot express my feelings in words,” added a delighted Ansari.
Chasing the fighting total of 104, Devils went over the line for the loss of just seven wickets with four balls to spare.
West Indies’ Kennar Lewis smacked a 28-ball 57 and steered Devils to the target, hitting six sixes and three boundaries during his stint at the crease.
“I am very happy that I could express myself today. I am also delighted with the fact that I could win this game for my team,” said Kennar.
“The pitch was really good and the ball was coming onto the bat, so I could play my strokes easily,” he added.
In the first match of the day, defending champions Maratha Arabians defeated Northern Warriors by five wickets.
UAE batsman Abdul Shakoor, smashed a whirlwind 73 off 28 balls with the help of five sixes and seven boundaries as Arabians overhauled the target of 128 off the last ball of the innings for the loss of just five wickets.
Arabians lived up to the billing of being the defending champions as they chased down a mammoth target of 128 in just 10 overs with the whole new set of players.
Shakoor was at his devastating best as he hit Wayne Parnell for 18 runs Wahab Riaz 23 in the third and the fourth over respectively.
Deccan Gladiator captain Imran Tahir dropped the hint for playing another one or two season after their exit from the Abu Dhabi T10 on Thursday.
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A match-winning bowling feat led by Delhi Bulls captain Dwayne Bravo, who along with Waqas Maqsood and Nyeem Young, destroyed a strong Northern Warriors batting to restrict them to 97 for 7 and take their team into the final of the Abu Dhabi T10
PSG hope to make an official announcement by the end of the day that the 23-year-old forward is staying at the club, the source, who asked not to be named, said.
The former welterweight world champion, who retired with an unbeaten 50-0 record, was preparing to fight Moore last week before the UAE went into mourning for the death of UAE president Sheikh Khalifa.
Football's governing body FIFA made history on Thursday by selecting Japan's Yamashita alongside Stephanie Frappart of France and Rwanda's Salima Mukansanga on a list of 36 referees for the World Cup.