By Ravendra Madholall in Toronto
Left-handed middle-order batsman Sherfane Rutherford stroked an impressive, unbeaten 84 to pilot Montreal Tigers to a convincing six-wicket triumph over Vancouver Knight Riders on Tuesday when action continued in the 2023 Global T20.
Playing at Brampton Sports Park, Ontario, Canada, Rutherford clobbered six sixes and seven fours to help Tigers get past Riders’ inadequate 149-4 from 20-overs.
Rutherford appeared at number five with his team in a precarious position at 21-3 and immediately opened his account with a fluent cover-drive for four.
Montreal Tigers won the game with 11 balls remaining after Rutherford lifted a mighty six over long-on to seal the deal handing Montreal Tigers their third successive victory from as many matches to stay unbeaten in the six-franchised tournament.
Rutherford, who occupied the crease for 53 balls, also shared a terrific, unbroken, fourth-wicket stand with Dipendra Singh Airee, who contributed 22.
Montreal Tigers began their chase by losing skipper Chris Lynn bowled comprehensively by left-arm orthodox spinner Fabian Allen for a duck while soon after the Jamaican and West Indies player Allen sent back Muhammad Waseem for 1.
Bangladesh’s ace batsman Shakib Al Hasan also failed to make a big impression having departed for 12 leaving the confident Rutherford and Dilpreet Singh to put together a solid 47-run, third-wicket partnership before Singh perished via the run-route having hit a measurable 22.
Allen, who was asked to open the bowling, ended with 2-18 from two overs.
In Vancouver Knight Riders’ innings, Pakistan’s international top-batsman Fakhar Zaman hit a responsible 53-ball 73 to lead the way but he didn’t receive more support as wickets fell regularly. Zaman tucked away three sixes and seven fours while skipper and South African Rassie van der Dussen weighed in with 26.
Former West Indies captain and right-arm seamer Carlos Brathwaite was the pick of the bowler for the Tigers with 2-20 from his maximum four overs. Rutherford was named player-of-the-match for his outstanding innings.
Vancouver Knight Riders have now suffered three defeats from four encounters. Montreal Tigers are also topping the points table while Riders struggling at 5.
Earlier in the day, Surrey Jaguars got the better of Toronto Nationals by 20 runs in a shorten game due to rain.
Surrey Jaguars were asked to take first strike at the invitation of Toronto Nationals and rallied along to a challenging 141-6 from the 18-overs while the Nationals were left tottering on 121-9 when proceedings came to an end.
Barbadian and right-arm seamer Matthew Forde grabbed 4-29 from his maximum four overs to be named player-of-the-match for the winners.
Meanwhile, the round-robin tournament was slated to continue on Wednesday with a double-header. At 11:00 am, Mississauga Panthers colliding with Toronto Nationals and then from 3:30 pm, defending champions Brampton Wolves confronting Montreal Tigers.
The Playoff segment will begin August 4th with the Grand Finale is billed for Sunday, August 6th at the same venue.
This tournament was inaugurated in 2018 and continued in 2019 but since there was no cricket due to the Global Pandemic.