Dwayne Bravo's Delhi Bulls took down the defending champions Northern Warriors by six wickets in the opening match of the Abu Dhabi T10 at the Zayed Cricket Stadium in Abu Dhabi on Friday. After being put into bat by the Delhi Bulls, the Warriors posted a competitive total of 107/4 in their 10 overs before breezy knocks from Rahmanullah Gurbaz (30 runs off 10 balls) and Mohammad Hafeez (31 runs off 18 balls) helped the Bulls chase down the total with one over to spare.
The Delhi Bulls got off to a great start as Rahmanullah Gurbaz smashed J/oshua Little for a six and a four off the first two deliveries of his team's innings. Gurbaz continued to provide the perfect impetus to the Bulls' innings as he cracked Imran Tahir for three consecutive sixes in the next over. However, the Warriors didn't let the game slip away too quickly as Tahir trapped Gurbaz LBW for 30 runs (10 balls) in the second over and Abhimanyu Mithun dismissed Rilee Rossouw for 6 runs (4 balls) in the very next over.
Sherfane Rutherford took the responsibility and kept the Bulls in the game by smashing a six in each of the fourth and fifth overs, taking the score to 58/2 at the end of the fifth over. Mohammad Hafeez also got into the groove, striking Chris Jordan for three boundaries in the sixth over. With 16 runs in the sixth over, the Bulls were in the driver's seat at 74/2. Rutherford continued to find the boundaries as he smacked Little for a six and a four in the seventh over. Little dismissed Rutherford (29 runs from 15 balls) on the last ball of the seventh over and Jordan removed Hafeez in the ninth over, but Romario Shepherd kept his calm and took the Bulls home with two consecutive boundaries.
Earlier, the Northern Warriors got off to a horrendous start as Kennar Lewis was bowled out by Shiraz Ahmed in the final delivery of the first over. The Warriors were reeling at 4/1 after Lewis departed for just 2 runs off 3 balls. The Delhi Bulls continued to put the pressure on the Warriors as Ravi Rampaul picked up the team's second wicket in the fourth over. Warriors' Samit Patel was bowled out by Rampaul for 15 runs from 10 balls leaving the Warriors at 28/2.
Thereafter, Captain Rovman Powell and Moeen Ali upped the ante for the Warriors. Romario Shepherd was struck for a six and a four as he conceded 17 runs in the fifth over. Powell and Ali continued to terrifically strike the ball and smashed 23 runs off Dwayne Bravo's bowing, taking their score to 69/2 at the end of the sixth over.
Continuing their momentum, Powell smashed consecutive boundaries and Ali struck a six off Dominic Drakes's bowling in the eighth over, taking their score to 98/2. Shepherd pulled things back brilliantly for the Delhi Bulls after he bowled out Powell for 38 runs off 19 balls and conceded only 3 runs in the ninth over. Thereafter, Captain Bravo bowled a magnificent final over, dismissing Ali for 35 runs off 21 balls and conceding just 6 runs which helped the Bulls to restrict the Warriors to a total of 107/4 in 10 overs.
Featured photo: Abu Dhabi T10