In a close encounter at Grand Prairie Stadium, Dallas, MI New York booked their place in Friday’s Challenger match after an action-packed clash against Washington Freedom in the eliminator match of Major League Cricket. Winning the toss, the Washington Freedom chose to bowl first, hoping to capitalize on early wickets.

MI New York faced a shaky start in their innings, losing opener Monank Patel (5) cheaply by the third over. Nicholas Pooran (1) also departed swiftly, failing to make an impact with the bat. The team struggled to find momentum, with Shayan Jahangir (25) losing his wicket in the tenth over when they were closing in on the 50-run mark. However, a crucial partnership between Dewald Brevis and Tim David steadied the ship, propelling MI New York beyond the 100-run mark.

Rashid Khan and Trent Boult
Rashid Khan and Trent Boult (r) celebrates the fall of a cricket. Photo by: Ron Gaunt/ SPORTZPICS for MLC

Unfortunately, Tim David (23) fell in the sixteenth over, failing to capitalize on his aggressive innings. Dewald Brevis (57), the prodigious South African batter, scored a crucial half-century but lost his wicket in the seventeenth over. David Wiese (3) was run out in the following over, further denting New York’s total. Rashid Khan (2) lost his wicket on the final ball of the innings, while Steven Taylor remained unbeaten with 15 runs off 12 balls. MI New York set a target of 141 runs in their allotted 20 overs, losing seven wickets. Saurabh Netravalkar claimed two wickets for Washington Freedom, while Justin Dill, Akeal Hosein, and Marco Jansen picked up one wicket each.

Washington Freedom’s chase began on a shaky note, with opener Matthew Short (8) departing early in the third over. Andries Gous and Mukhtar Ahmed managed to steady the innings momentarily, but Gous (24) failed to build on his start and lost his wicket in the eighth over. Mukhtar Ahmed (19) fell at the start of the eleventh over, and the departure of captain Moises Henriques (2) in the same over left Washington struggling to form a substantial partnership.

In the subsequent overs, Obus Pienaar (4) and Glenn Phillips (20) were dismissed cheaply, but Phillips’ fighting knock gave Washington Freedom hope of reaching the target. Akeal Hosein and Marco Jansen then showcased resilience, guiding their team past the 100-run mark with a determined partnership. However, Hosein (11) lost his wicket in the eighteenth over, and Marco Jansen (28) followed suit in the same over.

The pressure mounted on Washington Freedom, and in the final over, Justin Dill (3) was dismissed, leading to the team’s final score of 125 runs for the loss of nine wickets in their 20 overs. MI New York emerged victorious in the eliminator, signaling the end of Washington Freedom’s campaign in the inaugural season of Major League Cricket.

Trent Boult demonstrated his world-class bowling abilities, claiming four wickets for MI New York, while Nosthush Khenjige and David Wiese contributed with two and one wicket, respectively. The enthralling encounter left fans on the edge of their seats, and MI New York looked forward to their upcoming Challenger match with high spirits.

Brief Scores: MI New York 141/7 (Dewald Brevis 57, Shayan Jahangir 25, Saurabh Netravalkar 2/25) beat Washington Freedom 125/9 (Marco Jansen 28, Glenn Phillips 20, Trent Boult 4/20) by 16 runs.