MI Emirates outclass Gulf Giants to reach ILT20 final


MI Emirates stormed into the final through a domineering show over defending champions Gulf Giants to win by 45 runs in Qualifier 1 of the DP World ILT20 season 2 in Dubai.

Giants were bowled out for 118 in 18.2 overs through Sri Lanka’s 22-year-old leg spinner Vijayakanth Viyaskanth bagging 3 for 22 after Windies left-arm spinner Akeal Hosein  (2 for 13) struck early and Afghanistan’s left-arm spinner Waqar Salamkheil chipping in with (2 for 27).

Emirates had posted a challenging total of 163 for 7 despite Australian medium pacer Daniel Worrall’s fine spell of 3 for 15 from his four overs well backed by Blessing Muzarabani (2 for 34).

Player of the match, Akeal Hosein, revealed how he produced a match-wining spell: “ It's about trying to get accustomed as fast as possible and trying to put in as much recovery as possible on your off days. When I came in today, the first ball spun; so I said I'm going to run with that today.”

A delighted skipper Nicholas Pooran, skipper of MI Emirates, said: “The way we've played in the tournament so far has been brilliant. Proud of each and everyone of our members. Akeal was brilliant. It’s great to have experienced players. You can't buy experience. Bravo’s knock allowed Pollard and David to flourish.”

Giants captain James Vince candidly expressed his disappointment. “It was a disappointing performance. We were completely outplayed today. It was difficult to get our spinners in the game because of the left-right combination. If we had a left-hander to attack Akeal early on, it would have been useful. Unfortunately, conditions didn't change much through the match."

On February 15, Dubai Capitals will take on Gulf Giants in Qualifier at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium from 6:30 pm local time. 

Final scores:

MI Emirates 163 for 7 in 20 overs (Kusal Perera 22, Nicholas Pooran 36, Dwayne Bravo 30, Tim David 29, Kieron Pollard 27n.o, Daniel Worrall 3 for 15, Blessing Muzarabani 2 for 34)
Gulf Giants 118 in 18.2 overs (Usman Khan 26, Chris Jordan 31, Akeal Hosein 2 for 13, Waqar Salamkheil 2 for 27, Vijayakanth Viyaskanth 3 for 22)

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