T20 Blast: Zahir Khan castles Sam Billings with a beauty of a delivery

He scored 37 runs off the same number of deliveries.

Zahir Khan
Zahir Khan of Lancashire Lightning. (Photo by Sarah Ansell/Getty Images).

Lancashire and Kent squared off in the first quarter-final of the ongoing T20 Blast on Thursday. The former side came out on top as they progressed to the semi-final with a clinical win. It was the bowling of Lancashire which did the job for them. Zahir Khan, the Afghanistan chinaman bowler, was key for them as he bamboozled the opponent skipper Sam Billings with a beauty of a delivery.

After opting to bat first, Kent needed to get off to a blistering start, but they were reduced to 22/3 within four overs after which it came down to Billings to resurrect his side. He found an able partner in Sean Dickson as they added 40 runs for the fourth wicket. But the run-rate was never threatening the visitors and the wickets kept on coming from one end. The captain of the hosts though kept on playing cautiously and made sure that the runs were scored.

Magic delivery

After 15.5 overs, Kent were placed at 102/6 and partnership between Billings and Calum Haggett was flourishing. They would’ve hoped that the former steps on the accelerator and propel them to a decent total. Zahir Khan was bowling the 16th over and he bowled an excellent variation. Kent skipper thought that the ball will turn away from me. Instead, the chinaman’s magic worked an came in and castled the batsman.

Billings was left clueless on what happened and simply, he didn’t have any idea what the ball was going to do. He was sent back on a well-made 37 runs off the same number of deliveries. Kent couldn’t get the final push to their innings and eventually could post only 133 runs for the loss of nine wickets after 20 overs.

Lancashire easily chased down the total with eight balls to spare thanks to some patient knocks from their middle-order. Keaton Jennings led the way in the chase with a 46-run knock after which the skipper Dane Vilas and Jordan Clark batted sensibly to steer the team to the semi-finals.

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