Johnson Charles dazzles as Warriors beat Capitals in ILT20

This was the Warriors first win in the second season of the tournament

By Team KT

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Johnson Charles of Sharjah Warriors plays a shot. — Supplied photo
Johnson Charles of Sharjah Warriors plays a shot. — Supplied photo

Published: Mon 22 Jan 2024, 11:20 PM

Johnson Charles hit a brilliant 93 as Sharjah Warriors registered a five-wicket win over Dubai Capitals in ILT20 at the Dubai International Stadium on Monday.

This was the Warriors first win in the second season of the tournament, having lost the opening match by 31 runs against defending champions Gulf Giants.

Dubai Capitals, on the other hand, suffered their first defeat after beating MI Emirates in their first game.

On Monday, Charles virtually carried his team on his shoulders with a 71 runs partnership in 51 balls for the fourth wicket with Lewis Gregory (16), and a 29-run stand with UAE’s Basil Hameed for the fifth wicket.

Though Charles got out with Warriors still needing 27 runs off 23 balls, Hameed, through an unbeaten 24, and Daniel Sams (16n.o), carried their team to the victory with seven balls to spare.

“It's nice to get your first win out of the way. Great to see the boys putting their hands up and winning the game for us," said skipper Tom Kohler-Cadmore.

"Whenever we needed a boundary, Basil Hameed came up clutch for us; it's great to see we've got a full squad of players. I believe we've got 20 guys who can win games for us.”

Capitals’ medium pacer Dushmantha Chameera picked four out of the five wickets that fell for 28 runs, but his efforts went in vain.

Earlier, Capitals were put into bat first as posted a fighting total of 170 for 7 in 20 overs. Sam Billings top scored with 52 runs off 32 balls with four sixes and one boundary while Sikandar Raza’s hit 48 runs off 23 balls with three boundaries and three sixes. Together they put on 81 runs for the fourth wicket off 44 balls after their team got off to a slow start scoring just 38 runs in the powerplay.

Skipper and opener David Warner played a sedate knock of 20 off 27 balls while Rahmaullah Gurbaz, fresh from this match winning knock of 81 against MI Emirates, got out for only 15.

One-drop Jake Fraser-McGurk too could muster only 14 runs. Daniel Sams picked three wickets for 28, which included the wickets of Gurbaz, David Warner and Raza. He was well backed by Chris Woakes (2 for 21) and Mahesh Theekshana (2 for 32).

Theekshana, who had also bagged four wickets in his first match against Gulf Giants, received the white belt for being the leading wicket-taker of the tournament so far.

In pursuit of their target of 171 runs, Warriors brought in opener Martin Guptill as the super- sub in place of Dilshan Madushanka, but he got run out for 2.

Skipper and opener Tom Kohler-Cadmore then edged Dushmantha Chameera to wicketkeeper Gurbaz for 3.

Charles began with a six off Chameera and then went on to hit Jason Holder for a six and a boundary.

Niroshan Dickwella, who put on 25 runs in 12 balls with Charles, got out to Chameera for seven.

By the end of the powerplay, Charles ensured that Warriors were strongly placed at 60 for 3 by scoring 42 off those runs. He raced to his half century in 26 balls.

“This pitch was very good, bit more bounce, which meant a lot more leeway. Just had to make the most of the powerplay, which we did," Charles said.

"I just wanted to keep going. Very important to get good starts in the powerplay, you get on top of the opposition.”

Meanwhile, Capitals skipper Warner said the toss played a big role.

“Toss is a key component to this ground. Lots of dew here. We left a few runs out there, myself included," he said.

"They bowled really well to me in the powerplay. It's always tough when you bat first here. We bowled way too many bad balls to Johnson.”

Brief scores:

Sharjah Warriors beat Dubai Capitals by 5 wickets.

Dubai Capitals 170 for 7 in 20 overs (David Warner 20, Sam Billings 52, Sikandar Raza 48, Chris Woakes 2 for 21, Daniel Sams 3 for 28, Mahesh Theekshana 2 for 32)

Sharjah Warriors 171 for 5 in 18.5 overs (Johnson Charles 93, Basil Hameed 24 not out, Dushmantha Chameera 4 for 28)

Player of the Match: Johnson Charles

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