Recent Match Report – MI Emirates vs DC Final 2023/24

MI Emirates 208 for 3 (Pooran 57*, Fletcher 53, Zahir, 1-21) beat Dubai Capitals 163 for 7 (Billings 40, Banton 35, Boult 2-20, Viyaskanth 2-24) by 45 runs

Nicholas Pooran’s MI Emirates lifted the trophy in the second edition of the ILT20 as they beat Sam Billings’ Dubai Capitals by 45 runs in the final.
After Capitals opted to bowl, Muhammad Waseem and Kusal Perera gave Emirates a blazing start, smashing 72 in the first six overs. While the next six overs produced only 31 runs, Pooran’s unbeaten 57 off 27 balls towards the end steered Emirates to 208 for 3, the highest total of the season.
In response, Capitals kept losing wickets at regular intervals. Their highest partnership was 38, between Billings and Sikandar Raza for the fourth wicket. Both sides were found wanting in the field, with Emirates dropping six catches in all. But they had enough run cushion to not let those reprieves hurt them.

Earlier, Billings went against the conventional wisdom of putting up runs on the board in a big game, and Waseem and Perera soon made him rethink his decision. The two muscled Emirates past 50 in just 3.3 overs. By the end of the powerplay, Waseem had scored 43 on his own.

Left-arm wristspinner Zahir Khan broke the 77-run stand when Waseem, attempting his fourth six, miscued a wrong’un to wide mid-off. In his next over, Zahir could have had Andre Fletcher as well, but Billings fluffed the stumping chance.

However, Capitals managed to put the brakes on the scoring rate. When Perera tried to break free, he ended up losing his wicket to Raza.

Fletcher had looked clueless against Zahir and Raza, and was on 28 off 27 at one point. He finally picked up the pace in the 16th over, hitting Scott Kuggeleijn for two sixes and a four and bringing up his fifty off 35 balls.

Fletcher departed in the next over, but then Pooran stepped up and took the Emirates past 200. Along the way, he belted two fours and six sixes.

Akeal Hosein put Emirates further ahead when he removed Leus du Plooy for a two-ball duck. Tom Banton, who came in as a Super Sub, struck some lusty blows but legspinner Vijayakanth Viyaskanth had him stumped for a 20-ball 35.

A few overs later, Viyaskanth dismissed Raza as well to dent Capitals further. By the end of the 13th over, the asking rate had crossed 15. In an attempt to catch up, Billings gave charge to Waqar Salamkheil but failed to connect a googly and was stumped.

Jason Holder got three lives in five balls, but the boundaries did not come as frequently as Capitals needed. After Trent Boult gave away only five in the 17th over, and also got rid of Rovman Powell, the equation for Capitals was 75 required from 18 balls with four wickets in hand. The Capitals innings lasted full 20 overs, but the contest was over much earlier.

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