ILT20: Adil Rashid shines as Sharjah Warriors beat Abu Dhabi Knight Riders by 7 wickets

February 8, 2024
Leg spinner Adil Rashid, displaying his guile and artistry with the ball, backed with surgical precision, produced a spell of 4 for 12 to bowl out

Abu Dhabi, Feb 8 (IANS) Leg spinner Adil Rashid, displaying his guile and artistry with the ball, backed with surgical precision, produced a spell of 4 for 12 to bowl out Abu Dhabi Knight Riders for a paltry 94 runs in 17.1 overs in the 25th match of the ILT20 season 2 at the Zayed Cricket Stadium.

His mesmerizing spell ended Warriors’ three-match losing streak to win the match by seven wickets and also snap Knight Riders’ three-game winning run. It has also helped them remain in contention to reach the qualifiers, rising from the bottom of the table to the fourth position.

Chasing the moderate target, Liam Livingstone’s breezy knock of 30 off 13 balls and Niroshan Dickwella’s run-a-ball 30 runs, and their 52 runs partnership in 26 balls for the second wicket, ensured Sharjah Warriors a victory in 13.5 overs.

The tale of Knight Riders’ dismal show began soon after bottom-placed Warriors won the toss and elected to bowl against second-placed Knight Riders. Opener Joe Clarke got clean bowled for a duck to the third ball of the first over from Chris Woakes that went through the bat and pad gap to hit the stumps. Woakes’ first over was a wicket-maiden. Daniel Sams too bowled a maiden in the fourth over.

Alishan Sharafu hit two boundaries and a six off Sams in the sixth over to take 14 runs. Michael Pepper too began to open out. The pair put on 61 runs off 48 balls for the second wicket when Sharafu, going for a sweep off Adil Rashid, top-edged to wicketkeeper Niroshan Dickwella. Pepper too fell to the last ball of that over from Rashid, clean bowled for 32.

At the half way mark, Knight Riders were 68 for 3 with Imad Wasim and Sam Hain struggling to get runs. To make matters difficult for Knight Riders, Liam Livingstone trapped Wasim leg before for 4.

Half the side was back in the dug-out for 79 when Rashid bagged his third wicket having Hain caught by Joe Denly at long-off for 8 with the first ball of the 13th over. He also had Ravi Bopara out with the next ball, caught by Kohler-Cadmore at slip.

Laurie Evans got run out for 13 to a direct hit by Livingstone for 13. Knight Riders thus lost their last four wickets for just four runs with Denly’s two quick strikes to return with figures of 2 for 0.

The chase began with Warriors losing their skipper Kohler-Cadmore early, playing on Joshua Little on to his wicket for 1. Livingstone began with a six and a boundary off successive balls off Little.

Dickwella played second fiddle as Livingstone turned more aggressive. In the fourth over, Livingstone smashed Little for two sixes and two boundaries to take 21 runs off that over. He got out stumped by wicketkeeper Pepper off Imad Wasim for 30. His 13-ball knock had three boundaries and three sixes.

With 39 more runs needed from 87 balls, Martin Guptill joined Dickwella and took the score to 72 when Dickwella was stumped by Pepper off Wasim. The remaining 23 runs for their victory were scored between Guptill (13n.o) and Denly (18n.0).

Rashid, after bagging the Player of the Match award, said: “The seamers set it up, kept it tight and allowed me and the others to come into our own. I tried to vary it at times, bowl a bit slower and somedays it works. Fortunate for myself on how it went today.”

Warriors’ skipper Kohler Cadmore said: “It’s nice to bounce back and finish relatively comfortably. Every time I have played here, it has been a belter. But when Rash (Adil Rashid) come in to bowl, we knew spin was the way to go. We’ve got so many spin options, it was great to get it right with the ball.”

Knight Riders skipper Sunil Narine said: “We lost wickets in the first 6-8 overs, and then in the middle overs as well. We didn’t get a total we could defend. It surprised us how much it spun today, but we should have adjusted better to these conditions.”



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