By Ravendra Madholall
Montreal Tigers and Toronto Nationals are now out of the Global T20 Canada six-team tournament after Winnipeg Hawks surged to an eight-wicket victory over Edmonton Royals yesterday at the Maple Leaf ground in King City, Ontario.
The third and fourth-place match between the Royals and Hawks provided a chance for the Tigers who won against top-of-the-table side West Indies ‘B’ in the first match of the second round of the tournament.
Hawks stamped their authority to ensure bottom-place team Nationals and Tigers will no longer be in the tournament that started late last month and will end on Sunday at the same venue.
Royals only managed 141 all out off 19.5 overs while Hawks, in reply, reached 142-2 in 16.2 overs.
In the other fixture on Tuesday, Vancouver Knights thrashed Toronto Nationals by a comprehensive eight-wicket margin to complete the second round.
The net-run-rates before the beginning of the final match in the second round were Hawks (0.444) and Tigers (-0.331) with the latter banking heavily on Royals to overwhelm Hawks.
However, yesterday ,another sun-drenched day at King City, Winnipeg Hawks’ chose to field first after Australian skipper David Warner won the toss.
Royals began shakily, losing Luke Ronchi for 15 before Agha Salman and young Canadian batsman Abrassh Khan posted up a 62-run second-wicket stand.
Khan scored a solid 30 having been taken by David Miller at short mid-wicket while Salman soon followed. He was bowled by medium-pacer Rayad Emrit for 43 with seven boundaries on a relatively fast outfield.
That partnership was broken just before the ‘Strategic Time Out’ and the Royals kept losing wickets at quick intervals. Both spinners and pacers were operating effectively on a deceptive pitch .
West Indies fast-bowler Fidel Edwards was on target, picking up wickets in his first and second spells to finish with a player-of-the-match figure (4-0-19-4) while left-arm orthodox spinner and Canada player Hiral Patel, who was playing his first match, and medium-pacer Lendl Simmons claimed two wickets apiece.
When Hawks batted, out-of-form Australian batsman David Warner decided to play a long innings, getting himself ready for the qualifiers segment.
He was very meticulous, initially having mixed solid defense with occasional aggression in an attractive 42 from 35 balls laced with six fours and a towering six before he was caught in the deep.
Warner had scores of 1, 4, 1, 6 and 0.His opening companion Lendl Simmons once again demonstrated his fine form in the tournament and was well-entrenched for a third half-century of the competition but he was struckon his arm and was forced to retire hurt on 38.
By that time he had punched four fours and three sixes in his 23-ball occupation at the crease.
Ben McDermott chipped in with 18 while Trinidadian Mark Deyal, , slammed an exciting 37 not out which came off 19 deliveries while his compatriot Darren Bravo came out unbeaten on four when victory was achieved with 20 balls remaining.
Meanwhile, the Qualifiers stage begins today with a double-header as Winnipeg Hawks (third-place) clash with Edmonton Royals (fourth-place). Before this match, West Indies ‘B’ will be up against Vancouver Knights.