Babar Azam’s Colombo Strikers triumph in LPL.


Babar Azam’s Colombo Strikers triumph in LPL.

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Pakistan skipper Babar Azam, a key player of the Colombo Strikers team, played a standout role with the bat. The Strikers defeated the Galle Titans by seven wickets in a match of the ongoing Lanka Premier League (LPL) on Monday, August 7th, held at Pallekelle. The 28-year-old cricketer achieved his 10th T20 century while helping the Strikers successfully pursue a target of 189 runs, securing victory with a single ball remaining. This remarkable century was the very first one scored in the LPL 2023 season.

The right-handed batter delivered an impressive performance by scoring 104 runs in only 59 balls, achieving a striking rate of 176.27. His innings included five sixes and eight boundaries. Additionally, he collaborated with Pathum Nissanka to create an 11-run partnership for the opening wicket.

The official Twitter account of the LPL shared a video clip featuring Azam after his impressive batting performance.

“Just when it all appeared to be a Titan win, Babar Azam came to the crease! The rest is history.”

Just when it all appeared to be a Titan win, Babar Azam came to the crease! The rest is history.#LPL2023 #LiveTheAction

— LPL – Lanka Premier League (@LPLT20) August 7, 2023


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Nissanka played a steady innings, scoring 54 runs from 40 deliveries, which included five boundaries and a six. Babar Azam was later joined by Nuwanidu Fernando, and together they formed a crucial partnership of 55 runs for the second wicket.

During the partnership, Babar Azam was the dominant force, while Fernando played cautiously until he was dismissed by Shamsi in the 18th over, scoring eight runs from 13 balls. Despite Babar Azam’s impressive performance, the match remained intense, and the Strikers needed 14 runs from the final over.

Kasun Rajitha, tasked with defending 14 runs, bowled a delivery outside off, and Babar Azam’s shot was caught by the long-off fielder. Babar Azam’s innings featured eight boundaries and five sixes, contributing to his total of 104 runs from 59 balls.

After Babar Azam’s departure, the Strikers faced a challenging situation, but Mohammad Nawaz managed to hit a six and a boundary off Rajitha’s bowling to secure victory with one ball remaining. Shamsi led the bowling attack for the Titans, taking 2 wickets for 27 runs, while Rajitha claimed one scalp.

Earlier, the Titans had chosen to bat and posted a respectable total of 188/3 in their allotted 20 overs, with Tim Seifert’s impressive half-century and Shevon Daniel’s contribution of 49 runs as an opening batter.

Seifert was the highest scorer for the Titans, remaining unbeaten with 54 runs off 35 balls, including four boundaries and three sixes. Daniel’s 49 runs came from 31 deliveries and featured five boundaries and two sixes. Lasith Croospulle (36 off 19) and Bhanuka Rajapaksa (30 off 31) also made notable contributions to the Titans’ total.

For the Strikers, Naseem Shah, Ramesh Mendis, and Lakshan Sandakan each took one wicket. With this closely contested seven-wicket victory, the Colombo Strikers moved up to the third position in the LPL standings, earning four points from four matches. The Titans maintained their second spot due to a superior net run rate.

Thanks to Azam’s exploits with the bat, the Strikers have advanced to the third position in the LPL 2023 points table. Meanwhile, Azam has claimed the title of the tournament’s leading run-scorer, accumulating 211 runs across four innings at an impressive strike rate of 147.55. In a previous match against B-Love Kandy, he scored 59 runs from 52 balls, contributing to the Strikers’ victory with a margin of 27 runs.


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