The Taichung Warriors yesterday collapsed in the final at the 15th Taiwan Annual Cricket Cup in Chiayi City, but Chetan Sharma’s 50 scripted a near-unbelievable resurgence to snatch the trophy from the Taiwan Stars.
Sharma’s 4-24 restricted the Stars to 130-6, but the reply was a disaster as the Warriors fell to 25-7 after six overs.
However, Sharma undid all the work of opening bowlers Amir Sohail and Abrar Hussain (both 3-14) to guide them to a two-wicket win.
Photo courtesy of Mary Mullan-Christie
The result reversed their group-stage encounter at the eight-team, two-day competition at the Yunsan baseball fields.
In the semi-finals, Sohail took 4-21 as the Stars beat the Hsinchu Titans by 7 wickets, with Muntazir Abrar contributing 46, while the Warriors advanced after ousting the Chiayi Game Swingers by 43 runs.
Warriors opener Rajiuddin Mohammad gave them a launchpad with 31 from 15, while Bivan Singh (42) and Sharma (55 not out) steadied the boat after early wickets to power them to 165-5 from 18 overs, which they easily defended.
Earlier yesterday and on Saturday, the Stars and the Swingers went undefeated to top their respective groups.
In Group A, the Stars beat the Warriors by one wicket thanks to Sohail (20 not out), who dragged them over the line on the final delivery with the No. 11 at the other end.
They downed the Taiwan Daredevils by seven wickets, with Abrar taking three wickets for the winners, and beat the Taiwan Dragons by 13 runs.
The Warriors had wins over the Dragons by 37 runs and the Daredevils by 54 runs, even with the Daredevils’ Shane Ferreira belting 55 from 36 balls in a losing effort.
The Dragons defeated the Daredevils.
In Group B, 54 from 30 from Nitish Nair and 71 from 49 from opening partner Swaraj Shevgan powered the Swingers to a five-run win over Formosa, who themselves earned 55 from 24 from Aryadeep Mrinal.
The Swingers beat the Titans by 34 runs — their bowlers Siddhesh Pilankar (3-12) and Devesh Barshilia (3-13) leading the way — and the Proteas by 51 runs, with Vishwajit Tawar’s 65 from 35 outdoing No. 9 Herman Snyman’s 57 not out from 21 deliveries.
Formosa had wins over the Proteas by five runs — in a match where Jared Shaw top-scored with 75 from 39 for the losing side — but lost to the Titans by 26 runs, with Joyal Francis taking 3-11.
The Titans beat the Proteas by six wickets, with opener Shaw in another lone stand hitting 56 from 25 and taking three wickets.
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