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  • Writer's pictureJai Elhance

MLC Match 2 Review: MI NY vs SF

In match 2 of Major League Cricket, San Francisco won the toss and decided to bat first in temperatures which were hitting 115 degrees. Unicorn hats were the least unique of head coverings which people were using in an attempt to block the sun from shining directly on them. In conditions which were excellent for batting, the plan for the Unicorns was to tire the NY side out in the first innings.

Opening the batting for SF were Matthew Wade and Finn Allen. Aaron Finch, who usually opens the innings, was interestingly not doing so for the side in this game. Trent Boult and Kagiso Rabada opened the bowling for New York, with the latter picking up Wade off just his first delivery. Finch was still not seen as Marcus Stoinis came out to bat at number 3. Stoinis's stay at the crease was shorted by an inswinging delivery from Boult which crashed into middle stump. Rabada then took out Allen to leave SF stuttering at 22/3. With both the world class opening bowlers looking dangerous, and the likes of Sarabjit Ladda and Ehsan Adil to come, Aaron Finch and Corey Anderson had a big job on their hands.

Ladda, brought into the attack immediately after the powerplay, picked up the Unicorns' captain, Aaron Finch, who was trying to counter attack after NY took the early advantage. With Rashid Khan not taking part in the early stages of the tournament, Steven Taylor came in as a part time spinner from the other end. Corey Anderson and Shadab Khan rotated strike in the middle overs trying to rebuild for SF. Towards the end of that phase, the fireworks began. The 14th over from Hammad Azam went for 15, while Ladda was taken apart in the next one, going for 29. With the momentum in SF's favor, and both batsmen past 50, an explosive show was on the cards in the final 5 overs. Rabada, brought in for some damage control, ended up being counter productive as his over went for 22.

The 129 run partnership was finally broken when Boult took out Shadab, who nevertheless played a flawless innings of 61 from just 30 deliveries. Tajinder Dhillon played a small cameo at the end to eventually power the Unicorns to a massive 215/5 in their 20 overs. Corey Anderson top scored with 91 not out from just 52 deliveries. Scoring 128 from the final 9 overs with a six off the final ball, the momentum was with San Francisco going into the 2nd innings.

New York had to get off to a really good start, but they weren't able to do so. Both the US internationals, Steven Taylor and Monank Patel fell victim to Carmi Le Roux, leaving NY at 13/2. Dewald Brevis and Nicholas Pooran then started to build a partnership which took them to 64, before Brevis tried to address the rising required rate, and subsequently holed out. Pooran skied one when he was on 40, and Plunkett ended up taking a safe catch. After that, Kieron Pollard and Tim David put on a show to give NY fans some hope. Pollard got out towards the end for a very well made 48 from 27 balls, while David remained unbeaten on 53 from just 28. Despite their best efforts, New York fell 22 run short as SF bagged a couple of points in their opening encounter.

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