- New Zealand’s Seifert scored 49 runs from 22 deliveries to set the tone for the match.
Harare: The Durban Qalandars kick started their campaign at the inaugural edition of the Zim Cyber City Zim Afro T10 in grand style as they won a closely contested game against the Cape Town Samp Army by 8 runs. The Qalandars, who had Tim Seifert get them off to a flyer, put in a team performance and survived a scare as the experienced Indian cricketer Parthiv Patel almost won it with a late counter-attack.
Batting first, under the lights, the Durban Qalandars were off to an absolute flyer, giving the packed house a lot to cheer about. Hazratullah Zazai and Tim Seifert were scoring at good clip right from the get-go, and dealt in boundaries from either end.
None of the Cape Town Samp Army bowlers were able to put the brakes on the opening batters, who were quick to put on a half-century stand, well before the five-over mark. With the fans cheering them on, the Qalandars looked set for a big total.
However, in the seventh over, Afghanistan’s Mujeeb Ur Rahman struck the first blow for the Samp Army, getting the wicket of the swashbuckling New Zealander Seifert for 49. Soon after, Zazai (38) was scalped up by Tom Curran as the Qalandars slowed down a little in the final overs of the innings.
Andre Fletcher and Asif Ali added some quick runs at the end, putting on 28-run stand in the last over and half, pushing the Qalandars to 126/3 in 10 overs.
In response, the Samp Army took some time to go through the gears, as they lost the early wicket of Cephas Zhuwao. After that Rahmanullah Gurbaz and Bhanuka Rajapaksa put on a 30-run stand, helping the Samp Army reach the 50-run mark in the fifth over. But right after they reached the 50-run mark, George Linde dismissed Gurbaz for 19, to put the brakes on the Samp Army.
That was followed by a Samp Army collapse as Sean Williams (0), Rajapaksa (14) and Tom Curran (0) departed one after the other in quick succession, allowing the Qalandars to take full control of proceedings.
Next in were Parthiv Patel and Karim Janat, both of whom had a mountain to climb if the Samp Army were to pull off what would be a stunning comeback. The Samp Army had their backs to the wall, and needed 46 runs from the final 2 overs.
Janat and Parthiv weren’t throwing in the towel just yet, and both batters upped the ante against the Qalandars’ bowling attack, bringing the equation down to 27 runs in the final over. The Indian wicket-keeper batter Parthiv threw the kitchen sink at Tendai Chatara in the final over, but could not take the Samp Army over the line, as they fell short by 8 runs.
Durban Qalandars – 126/3 (Tim Seifert – 49, Hazratullah Zazai – 38; Tom Curran 1/11, Mujeeb Ur Rahman – 1/12) won by 8 runs against Cape Town Samp Army – 118/5 (Parthiv Patel – 37*, Karim Janat – 30*; Azmatullah Omerzai – 2/14, George Linde – 2/18)