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Monank Patel and Andries Gous hit first T20 International fifties in USA’s dominating win over Canada

 

  • Hosts take 1-0 lead in five-match bilateral series

  • Debutant left-arm spinner Nosthush Kenjige does star turn with ball

 

Houston, TX, April 07, 2024: In a dominating display, the USA men’s cricket team swept aside neighbours Canada by six wickets, to take a 1-0 lead in the five-match T20 International (T20I) bilateral series, being played here at the Prairie View Cricket Complex ground. Team USA skipper and wicket-keeper batter Monank Patel and Andries Gous, both struck their first T20I fifties, to help their side comfortably chase down Canada’s 132 with plenty to spare.

Left-arm spinner Nosthush Kenjige, among five T20I debutants for the USA along with Gous, was the pick of the bowlers, picking up three for 31, in what was a thoroughly professional all-round performance by the hosts.

All games  of the USA-Canada T20I Bilateral series are being broadcast LIVE on the official USA Cricket YouTube Channel from 9 AM CST.

Canada not allowed to get away

Monank won the toss in the morning and chose to chase in what turned out to be a good call in the end.

On a true pitch and windy conditions, the experienced Canadian pair of Srimantha Wijeyratne and Aaron Johnson opened the innings and the latter in particular, looked in punishing mood notching up 16 off the first seven balls. He struck two fours and a neatly lofted sweep for six off Kenjige in the very first over of the game.

Seasoned left-arm quick Saurabh Netrawalkar,  soon cut short Johnson’s innings in the second over and Wijeyratne and one-drop Pargat Singh would then be pulled back by some tight USA bowling, as Canada managed just 30 off the power play (six overs), without losing any further wickets.

Kenjige then picked the first of his three wickets when Wijeyratne succumbed to the pressure of upping the ante and flat-batted to Shadley Van Schalkwyk in the deep.

Two significant partnerships then propelled the innings for Canada, the first of 36 runs between Pargat and Harsh Thaker (13) and the second of 37, led by skipper Saad Bin Zafar’s 15-ball 29 cameo and all-rounder Nicholas Kirton. Saad’s fightback with Kirton came after Canada had been reduced to 72/6 in the 14th over.

Kirton scored a positive 27 off 23 to be dismissed in the final over as the Canadians folded for a fighting 132 with Kenjige being ably supported by former skipper Netrawalkar (2/30) and Van Schalkwyk (2/19).

Openers do the job for USA

Monank and Steven Taylor then began the chase for the hosts and provided a rollicking start scoring 47 in the first six overs of powerplay. That would turn out to be half the job done for USA.

Kirton’s introduction in the seventh over brought the first wicket, as Taylor was brilliantly caught by Pargat Singh, who scooped the ball up barely inches from the ground, diving full length in front at short fine leg. The left-handed opener struck two sixes and a four in his 23-ball innings of 22.

That was all the joy that the Canadians would have for a long time as Monank and number three Gous, the second player of South-African origin in the team after Van Schalkwyk, ensured no further hiccups for the next six overs with a fluent 57-run stand.

Monank brought up his 50 in 30 balls with seven fours and a six to his name while Hous struck his in 33 balls, to be out in the end with just one needed for a win.

When the captain holed out in the deep to Kirton off Dillon Heyliger in the 13th over, the score read 104. Gous ensured that despite the further loss of vice-captain Aaron Jones, USA reached the target quickly. When Gajanand Singh struck the winning runs, two and a half overs were still left to be bowled.

Kenjige was adjudged the man of the match

Squad of Team USA against Canada in the five match T20I series:

Monank Patel (captain), Aaron Jones (VC), Andries Gous, Corey Anderson, Gajanand Singh, Harmeet Singh, Jessy Singh, Milind Kumar, Nisarg Patel, Nitish Kumar, Noshtush Kenjige, Saurabh Netravalkar, Shadley Van Schalkwyk, Steven Taylor, Usman Rafiq.

Reserve Players: Juanoy Drysdale, Saiteja Mukkamalla, Shayan Jahangi

About USA Cricket:

USA Cricket is the National Federation for cricket in the United States as recognized by the International Cricket Council. USA Cricket’s mission is to govern, regulate, develop and promote all forms of cricket at all levels in the United States, and to enable U.S. cricketers to achieve sustained competitive excellence and successfully compete in national and international competition. Through a diverse Board of Directors that has representation from most cricket stakeholder groups, USA Cricket will lead the sport to new heights by creating and administering value added programs to grow and develop the sport.

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