CLT20 Desk in Mumbai
Match Report: M8 - Titans vs Auckland Aces
Titans force Aces into submission with clinical 59-run win
On a surface that was expected to give the fast bowlers some lateral movement early on, Henry Davids and Jaques Rudolph saw the Titans off to a rollicking start; they added 74 runs in 8.3 overs. Despite the field restrictions, both batsmen successfully pierced the field on a number of occasions. Davids, who would play some powerful shots, was dismissed when he tried to run down a yorker from Azhar Mahmood but made no contact; before he lost his off stump, the 32-year-old had made 36 from 22 balls and hit five boundaries and a six.
The left-handed Rudolph - top scorer in the Titans’ innings - played some elegant drives through the off side. One also got to see him muscle a couple over the in-field and even play unorthodox strokes on a couple of occasions. The southpaw scored 63 from 53 balls and hit seven boundaries; he perished in the 18th over when he tried to hit one over cover, but didn’t get too much power in the stroke and was caught at the edge of the circle.
Farhaan Behardien, who walked in to bat after skipper Martin van Jaarsveld was dismissed in the 13th over, helped finish the innings with a bang; though he was circumspect to begin with, he hit three sixes (including one on the final delivery of the innings) and a four in the last couple of overs to put his team in a commanding position. The 29-year old-was especially severe on the Aces’ strike bowler Kyle Mills, who he hit for two sixes and a boundary.
For the Auckland Aces, Mills (who had a rare off day), Michael Bates and Azhar Mahmood picked up wickets.
Set to chase 173 – the highest they’ve been asked to chase in their four matches this season – the Auckland Aces struggled after their three in-form batsmen were dismissed inside the first six overs. Lou Vincent, Martin Guptill and Azhar Mahmood would be dismissed for single-digit scores and that left their younger, inexperienced players faced with a mountain to climb.
Andre Adams, batting at No.10, would be the top-scorer of the innings; he used the long-handle to good effect as he scored two boundaries and as many sixes in his 17-ball 30. His 45-run partnership with Bates (14) – the highest 10th wicket partnership in the CLT20 – would be the biggest association of the innings too. Anaru Kitchen was the only bright light in what was an otherwise disappointing performance from the Auckland Aces top order; the 28-year-old muscled his way to three boundaries and a six to finish with 23. The Auckland Aces would be bowled out for 113, with 11 deliveries remaining in their allotted 20 overs.
Ethy Mbhalati and Alfonso Thomas shared the bowling honors with three wickets each; Roelof van der Merwe (who got the ball to grip and bounce), CJ de Villiers and Eden Links picked up a wicket each.
Brief Scores: Titans 172-4 in 20 overs (Jacques Rudolph 63, Farhaan Behardien 448*, Michael Bates 1-21) beat the Auckland Aces 113 in 18.1 overs (Andre Adams 30, Ethy Mbhalati 3-26, Alfonso Thomas 3-18)
Man of the Match: Farhaan Behardien, for his unbeaten 48 off 23 balls.