Twitter Reactions: The Panthers blow away the strengthened Legends by 37 runs

Debutant Ziaur Rahman Sharifi impressed with his 3-wicket haul.

Sikandar Raza
Sikandar Raza. (Photo Source: Twitter)

The early tournament favourites, Balkh Legends were humbled for the first time in the Afghanistan Premier League (APL). Their encounter against the Paktia Panthers was like a dead-rubber. The Legends lost the game by 37 runs and crumbled to the third position on the points table.

With the second consecutive win, the Pakita Panthers now lead the points table, courtesy a better net run rate. The points table is now evenly poised with three teams having four points each. Cameron Delport, who was unbeaten on 78 off 40 balls was named the ‘Man of the Match’.

Delport doesn’t let the openers’ hard work go in vain

The Panthers were put into bat first by Mohammad Nabi and co. The openers, Mohammad Shahzad and Ihsanullah Janat took the team off to a flyer. Although both of them got off to a blistering start, they missed out on their well-deserved half-centuries. While the former was dismissed for 42(21), his partner got out after scoring 47 off 28 balls.

But then, Cameron Delport, who came in at number three helped the team capitalise on the start they got. He started off slow and anchored the innings initially. However, he unleashed his big-hitting prowess in the last three overs of the game as the Panthers posted 204 runs on the board. Samiullah Shenwari 25(14) and Rahmanullah Gurbaz 15(8) played some useful cameos.

Udana’s four-wicket haul does the job for the Panthers

The Balkh Legends got off to a positive start chasing this massive total. Chris Gayle (20 off 10 balls) and Usman Ghani (16 off 8 balls) looked promising but failed to achieve what the Panthers’ openers did. With their crucial batsmen in Colin Munro and Ryan ten Doeschate getting out for 23 and 4 runs respectively, the side was down to 87/4.

Ravi Bopara, after having crawled to 23 off 22 balls also got out as the score soon became 92/5. At this stage, there wasn’t any hope left. However, a 15-ball 40 from skipper Nabi kept the fans briefly interested. Once he got out, there wasn’t anything left and the side was bowled out for 167 runs in 19 overs. Isuru Udana picked four wickets in the match and continued his glorious run in the tournament.

Here is how Twitterati reacted:

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