Narine, Lamichhane keep Tigers afloat

Sunil Narine’s 21-ball half-century followed Sandeep Lamichhane’s three-wicket haul, setting up Montreal Tigers’s six-wicket win against the Cricket Windies B team. The Nepal spinner finished with figures of 3 for 31 to restrict CWI B to 162 for 7. Narine then struck 61 off only 25 deliveries, which included one four and nine sixes, while Sikandar Raza, Moises Henriques and Najibullah Zadran also came up with important contributions to help Tigers reach the target in the 18th over.

The victory was only Tigers’ second in six games, which has just about kept them afloat in the competition. Only a huge loss for Winnipeg Hawks in the final round two game against Edmonton Royals could aid Tigers’ cause. Hawks are currently fourth and have a Net Run Rate of 0.44 while Tigers are fifth with an NRR of -0.32.

Tigers lost Nicholas Kirton early in the chase but Narine ensured that the scoring rate wasn’t a problem for them. After Kavem Hodge was struck for three sixes by the left-handed batsman across two overs, Derval Green felt the brunt of Narine’s attack as he was hit for four successive sixes in the final over of the powerplay.

The start that Narine provided meant that Henriques and Raza could guide Tigers in the chase, with their strike rates under 115 not posing much of a problem. Zadran’s 12-ball 29 then expedited Tigers’ victory, which was a much-needed boost to their NRR.

Earlier, asked to bat first, CWI B lost Sherfane Rutherford early but Shamar Springer’s 40-ball 62, and useful knocks from Brandon King and Nicholas Pooran aided the progress of the West Indies side. Lamichhane and Cecil Pervez picked up four wickets between them in overs 13-16 to pull things back. Lasith Malinga then did a good job at the death, with only 15 runs coming off the last three overs.

Brief scores: CWI B 162/7 in 20 overs (Shamar Springer 62, Nicholas Pooran 25; Sandeep Lamichhane 3-31) lost to Montreal Tigers 165/4 in 17.3 overs (Sunil Narine 61, Sikandar Raza 32*; Khary Pierre 2-25) by 6 wickets.

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