Mascarenhas propels Rajasthan to big win
by CricketArchive Staff Reporter

Ground:Lord's Cricket Ground, St John's Wood
Scorecard:Middlesex v Rajasthan Royals
Player:AD Mascarenhas, M Kartik, AD Mascarenhas, T Henderson, SA Asnodkar, Sohail Tanvir, Sohail Tanvir
Event:British Asian Cup 2009

DateLine: 6th July 2009


Rajasthan Royals all-rounder Dimitri Mascarenhas did a brilliant job, first with the bat and then with the ball to overwhelm Middlesex Panthers by 46 runs in front of a packed crowd at Lord's. He scored a rapifire 32 at a strike arte of 200 propelling his side to a competitive score, and then the right-arm medium-pacer took two wickets, including the big one of Owais Shah to push the Panthers on the backfoot from the very beginning.


Middlesex batsmen Dawid Malan and Eoin Morgan tried to thwart the inevitable for a little while but they weren't too effective. In fact such was the impact of the initial overs bowled by Rajasthan bowlers that after the first 10 overs, the Panthers were struggling at 47 for 3. Thereafter, nearly two runs were needed from each ball and the kind of bowling skipper Shane Warne had up his sleeves, the task proved well beyond Middlesex.


The start of the match under overcast skies and heavy showers would surely have forced the crowd to wonder whether the organisers would be able to squeeze a full match or not. But somehow the weather cleared up and though there was rain again in between, passing showers did not hamper the game a bit and a full game was played.


Like always Shane Warne relied on his youngsters and they as usual did not prove him wrong. In the absence of Yusuf Pathan what Royals needed was a good start and Swapnil Asnodkar and Faiz Fazal provided the side just that. The right-hand, left-hand combination guided Rajasthan to 55 in the seventh over before team India discard Murali Kartik had Fazal caught at sweeper cover.


Though there were no further breakthroughs for a while and Kartik kept the brakes on Rajasthan. Asnodkar then started to open out and in the process of swinging a full toss over square leg in the 15th over, he was dismissed by Malan. Fall of another couple of wickets, that of Naman Ojha and debutant Justin Langer, brought Mascarenhas in.


The right-handed hard hitter started with a four to third man and then a pull over midwicket providing the required impetus. Kaif had little of the strike towards the end and helped Mascarenhas steal a flurry of twos to lift Rajasthan to a total which the misfiring Middlesex batting never looked like chasing down.