Otago go down meekly to Cobras
A captain’s knock from the Cape Cobras’ skipper Andrew Puttick ensured that his team became the 1st team to enter the next round of the Champions League. The Cobras comprehensively beat the team from New Zealand, Otago, by 54 runs. Otago’s skipper Craig Cumming won the toss and chose to field first at the Chinnaswamy stadium. Riding on the unbeaten ton from Puttick and some lusty hitting from Justing Ontong towards the end, the Cobras rattled up 193/4 in their 20 overs. In reply, Otago was bowled out for 139 within 18 overs. >
Despite losing Gibbs early for a game straight game, the Cobras kept a healthy run rate throughout their innings, thanks mainly to their captain’s top form. His innings comprised of both, some copybook shots that the coaches would have been proud of and then, there were some typical slogs as well. He was ably assisted by first, JP Duminy and then by Justin Ontong towards the end whose late order assault pushed the total towards 200. JP Duminy seemed to continue from where he left off in the 1st match as his 25 ball 32 contained 2 4s and 2 6s. Even after Duminy got out, Puttick continued to play his shots and in the company of Justin Ontong, he launched a brutal assault on the hapless bowling in the 2nd half of their innings. From 72/2 at the end of the 10th over, they reached to a commanding 193 with Puttick getting to his century in fine style, his 12th boundary of the match bringing up the landmark. He remained unbeaten till the end at 104, while at the other end, Ontong blasted his way to 39 n.o., an innings that came off only 14 balls and contained 2 boundaries and 4 maximums. Dimitri Mascarenhas was the standout bowler for Otago with his 4 overs going for only 20 and he also picked up 2 wickets. >
Otago’s chase began well with Brendom McCullum especially looking in good touch but none of their top batsmen went onto make a major contribution. Each of the top 4 batsmen got starts and were scoring at a brisk rate as well but with all of them giving their wickets away at regular intervals, the chase became more and more difficult with each passing over. Nathan McCullum provided some entertainment with some lusty hitting in the middle overs but with little support from the other end and with the asking rate climbing all the time, the final result was never in much doubt. Eventually, the team folded up much before their allotted 20 overs, paving the way for the team from South Africa to enter the Super Eights.
For his outstanding effort with the bat, Andrew Puttick was declared the ‘Man of the Match’. Otago next face off against the Bangalore Royal Challengers on Monday and the winner of that do-or-die encounter will join the Cobras in the next stage of the tournament.
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