POLLARD…former West Indies white-ball captain anchored a pair of stabilising stands with his successor Nicholas Pooran and Australian Tim David
DALLAS, USA (CMC) – There was a series of tidy performances from all the players with ties to the Caribbean who appeared for teams in Major League Cricket on Friday in the United States.
Former West Indies white-ball Captain Kieron Pollard anchored a pair of stabilising stands with his successor Nicholas Pooran and Australian Tim David, but New Zealander Corey Anderson smashed an unbeaten 91 off 52 balls to set up a 22-run win for the San Francisco Unicorns against Mumbai Indians (MI), New York, in the first match of a double-header at the Grand Prairie Stadium.
Embattled West Indies left-handed batsman Shimron Hetmyer sparkled briefly, but he was dismissed in a dramatic finish before Seattle Orcas claimed a five-wicket win with two balls remaining against Washington Freedom in the nightcap match.
Chasing 216 to win, MI were rocked early and were 13 for two after South Africa left-arm pacer Carmi le Roux struck in his first two overs.
He removed former Jamaica Scorpions opener Steven Taylor for a first-ball duck in the first over of the innings and Taylor’s United States teammate Monank Patell for eight in the third over.
MI managed to reach 40 for two at the end of the Power Play, and Pooran and South African opener Dewald Brevis added 51 for the third wicket to give them momentum before they stumbled to 73 for three at the halfway stage after Pakistan leg-spinning ace Shadab Khan got Brevis for 32 in the ninth over.
Pooran struck a pair of sixes off United States left-arm spinner Chaitanya Bishnoi in the 11th over and inched MI closer to 100 before he English pacer Liam Plunkett got him caught and bowled for 40 in the next over. Polland struck two fours and four sixes in 48 from 27 balls, and David lashed four fours and four sixes in the top score of 53 not out off 28 balls, and they dictated terms in a fifth-wicket stand of 60.
When Plunkett got Pollard caught at deep midwicket, MI needed 62 from 15 balls, which was always going to be a mountain to climb.
Unicorns had won the toss and chose to bat, but South Africa fast bowler Kagiso Rabada and former New Zealand left-arm pacer Trent Boult rocked their top order and had the San Francisco franchise wobbling on 22 for three.
Anderson and Shadab, whose 61 off 30 balls included four fours and five sixes, took centre stage thereafter and strung together a 129-run partnership for the fifth wicket that made all the difference.
In the later match, Hetmyer made 23 and almost cost Orcas the match when he was bowled by South Africa left-arm pacer Marco Jansen with eight needed from five balls, with his side chasing 145 to win.
United States all-rounder Shubham Ranjane creamed the next two deliveries for boundaries to seal the win for Orcas whose innings was anchored by knocks of 48 from United States opener Nauman Anwar and 43 not out from Pakistan batsman Imad Wasim.
West Indies left-arm spinner Akeal Hosein bowled two overs that cost 20 and got Sri Lanka batsman Shehan Jayasuriya for six early in the chase.
It was a bittersweet night for Hosein after he hit the top score of 33 not out and Freedom reached 144 for seven from their 20 overs after they were put in to bat.