Dubai Super League Cricket Play-Offs got underway with the Exiles Cricketers facing Dubai Stallions – Mustangs in their Quarter Final. On paper at least, this looked like a sure fire win for the Exiles, but as we all know, sport has a funny way of throwing the form book out of the window as and when it suits.
The Dubai Stallions – Mustangs opened the batting and got off to a pretty good start. Openers Sarim Rafiq and Hitesh Goel had posted a partnership of 32 runs before a superb piece of fielding from Clint ‘Berksie’ Berkenshaw saw Sarim Rafiq depart after an over ambitious 2 run call. If there is one thing that the Exiles’ South African does have, it’s a decent arm, and the ball was rocketed in to Usman Azim who did well to take the catch, Rafiq was run out and on his way back to the pavilion.
Clint ‘Berksie’ Berkenshaw heads back to the boundary
Siddhant ‘Sid’ Jhurani gives directions
Dave Adama gets comfortable at slip
Ashley Connick was vocal all afternoon
Zeeshan ‘Zee’ Durrani finished with 3 wickets, a great fielding performance, and the Man-of-the-Match award
Umar Yaqoob came to the crease for Mustangs CC but failed to contribute anything to the scoreline after a wild swing saw him caught by ‘Berksie‘ in deep cover off the bowling of Mitul Kapadia. 34 runs for 2 wickets off 7 overs, Exiles CC looked to be getting into the swing of things. Mustangs wickets were starting to fall easily, and apart from some stubborn resistance from Abdul Razaq who gave the scoreboard an air of respectability with his 33 runs off 40 balls, the Exiles limited the Mustangs total to 133 runs from 25 overs.
Ali Yaqoob sends one skywards for the Mustangs
Caught by Ajay Krishnan
The Exiles could not be blamed for expecting to reach their target with relative ease, but as we already know, sport can do very strange things. Jack Luffman and Ajay Krishnan opened the batting for the Exiles and with 25 on the board, Jack Luffman was called lbw off the bowling of Nitin Jain. ‘Sid’ Jhurani came to the wicket for the Exiles and after adding 10 runs to the board himself, he was stumped by Sarim Rafiq in what looked like an extremely tight call.
Jack Luffman starts swinging his bat
Ajay Krishnan added an impressive 47 runs
There’s always a bit of excitement when ‘Berksie’ comes into the match with a bat in his hand. The South African usually doesn’t take too long to start looking to see how far out of the oval he can hit a ball. Sure enough, 28 runs were added to the score off only 22 balls which included three x 4s. The Exiles were 105 for 4 wickets and closing in on their 134 run target.
‘Sid’ Jhurani added 10 to the total
Clint Berkenshaw swats another one away for 4
Exiles captain, Dave Adams, quickly made himself at home on the Sevens cricket pitch and in next to no time clobbered a 6 not just over the boundary, but over the sight boards as well. Dave pushed Exiles Cricket Club along to victory with an unbeaten 29 runs off 22 balls. Asif Rajah (6) and Abrar Khazi (4 not out) helped steer the Exiles into the Dubai Super League Premier Play-Offs Semi-Finals.
Dave Adams hit a quick fire 29 not out
Asif Rajah took 2 wickets
Dubai Exiles Cricket Club – Falcons
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Dubai Stallions Cricket Club – Mustangs
Dubai Exiles CC v Dubai Stallions – Mustangs CC
Dubai Super League Premier Play-Offs (28th November 2020)