Wanindu Hasaranga was the T20 World Cup MVP. With bat and ball, the Deccan Gladiators smash the Bangla Tigers. The Sri Lankan grabbed ten wickets in the Super 12s and gave only 5.84 runs per over.
As the competition nears its conclusion, he is once again the most important player and an integral element of the Deccan Gladiators’ march to the top of the standings. With the ball in hand, he has often bamboozled the opposition.
Wanindu Hasaranga is the only player with a single-digit bowling average
He has 18 wickets at an average of 8.61 and an economy rate of 8.15. He is also, unsurprisingly, the only bowler in the league who has delivered a maiden. No one else comes even close.
Hasaranga ensured that this is a format where bowlers can flourish with a five-wicket haul that decimated the Bangla Tigers on a day when two batters lit up the Zayed Cricket Ground with their fierce hitting.
A five-wicket haul in any match is an accomplishment. To accomplish it in two takes is, to put it mildly, absurd.
He dismissed Karim Janat in his first over before bowling Johnson Charles with a googly the next delivery. Isuru Udana made it through the hat-trick game.
The second over by Hasaranga was absolute magic. Benny Howell tried a reverse sweep but was met by Tymal Mills at the backward point. The next ball, James Faulkner played across the line, completely missing the ball and being bowled.
Hasaranga’s fifth hat-trick ball of the event drew Vishnu Sukumaran out. He, too, didn’t stay long. Sukumaran followed with three more dot balls before pulling one straight to the fielder.
Hasaranga had the best stats in T10 history with a five-for
He also had a maiden in a T10 game, which was perhaps even more spectacular. To be accurate, a three-wicket maiden.
“I’m quite impressed with Hasaranga,” remarked Mushtaq Ahmed, the coach of the Deccan Gladiators and one of the best spinners of all time. “I’ve been discussing with him how to execute his variants. He has a good wrong-un, but he has to work on his leggies. People are waiting for his wrong arm, but he’s been bowling more leg-breaks and flippers, as well as honing his off-spin against lefties.
It was due to the explosive Tom Kohler-Cadmore, who had played the longest innings of the tournament thus far, that he did not receive his fifth player of the match award of the competition.
Kohler-Cadmore came up four shy of what would have been the Abu Dhabi T10’s first ever century. Chris Lynn was undefeated with 91* off deliveries in 2019, and no one has hit the nineties since. Kohler-dreadful Cadmore’s 96 off 39 will be hard to beat.
The 27-year-old went out to bat knowing that a low score would put his position in jeopardy heading into the playoffs. His greatest score, aside from an undefeated half-century against the Delhi Bulls earlier in the competition, was 12. In his previous six innings, he had only achieved 46 runs, including a golden duck last time out.
Kohler-Cadmore needed a bit of luck when he was dropped on 24 by Faulkner after hitting a couple of boundaries off both Mohammad Amir and Luke Wood in the powerplay, but he made the most of it.
Kohler-Cadmore dominated with 12 fours and five sixes against Andre Russell at the other end
Before driving a full-toss to a diving Will Jacks at mid-off in the last over.
Kohler-Cadmore claimed after the game that he opted to only use one grip on his bat, rather than the two he had been using previously and that that was all he required.
The Yorkshire batter is now a part of T10 history, but it was a bittersweet occasion for him, as he came up just short of becoming the first-ever centurion.
Hasaranga’s spell looked much more mesmerizing after such a magnificent knock. The Tigers were bowled out for 78 runs after Kohler-Cadmore scored 96 himself.
The Gladiators, Hasaranga, Kohler-Cadmore, and the Gladiators will play a straight shootout on Friday for a spot in the final against either Team Abu Dhabi or the Delhi Bulls.
Rahmanullah Gurbaz, who had only turned 20 days before, hit the fastest 50 of the competition in the following game. As the Delhi Bulls thrashed the Chennai Braves, Gurbaz’s scorching knock took just 14 deliveries, including five fours and six sixes. They sped to an 81-run goal in 25 deliveries, capping a dismal season for the Braves.
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