Faisalabad v Otago, CLT20 qualifier, Mohali September 17, 2013

McCullum powers Otago to win


Otago Volts 142 for 2 (McCullum 83*, de Boorder 30*) beat Faisalabad Wolves 139 for 8 (Misbah 46, Butler 2-23) by 8 wickets
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

A menacing opening burst from Otago Volts' fast bowlers and a well-measured mauling from Brendon McCullum delivered them an eight-wicket victory over Faisalabad Wolves, who failed to compete in any discipline. All four Otago's quicks bowled out, but none conceded more than 6.5 an over and shared seven wickets between them.

Misbah-ul-Haq the batsman might have his reputation embellished, after hitting a 34-ball 46 that ensured that there was a contest, but as a captain he will perhaps attract yet more scrutiny for misreading the Mohali pitch, and handing the opposition a clear advantage by batting first. McCullum's thoughtfully-constructed 83 not out from 65 made light work of Faisalabad's 139, and Otago reached their target with 13 balls to spare.

James McMillan might not even have played this match, had Jacob Duffy been fit, but his impact on the match was immediate and far reaching. Ammar Mahmood struck the first ball of the match powerfully for four, but could not get McMillan's first ball further than point, who knelt to take a straightforward catch.

That over cost one run and had reaped one wicket, and were it not for an inside edge off the last ball, McMillan's second over would have been no less impressive. Otago's seam collective wasted little of that early momentum, as they rarely veered far from the stumps in the early overs, and had Faisalabad hobbling at 34 for 3 in the eighth over.

With that dismally familiar scoreline beckoning Misbah to the crease, he rolled up his sleeves to launch another dutiful recovery, as he has done for Pakistan so many times in the last year. He found a like-minded partner in Khurram Shehzad, and the pair began reclaiming ground in steady shovelfuls at first, before Misbah felt he had the measure of the pace-friendly Mohali dirt.

A legside six off Nathan McCullum in the 12th over foreshadowed the aggression to follow, which would yield Faisalabad their most profitable over of the innings. In the 14th, Misbah walloped two more sixes and a four in the same cow-corner region, off the same bowler, hauling his side's run rate beyond six for the first time since the first over.

Though Khurram had clung on in Misbah's company to help forge a 61-run stand, he could not match his captain's attacking competence, and departed for 27 off 36, just as the innings might have moved into a phase of dominance, had he stayed around. Misbah's progress slowed, as Otago's disciplined pace bowlers returned in full force, and he was bowled making room to hit through the offside, off the last ball of the 17th over.

McCullum did not allow poor balls to go unpunished early in his innings, but atypically, he did not go looking for trouble either. Neil Broom had departed in the first over, and with a modest score to chase, a return of 16 from his first 20 balls did not seem to irk him. Three Hamish Rutherford sixes saw Otago eclipse the required rate in the Powerplay overs, and McCullum sought nothing more than to maintain that steady momentum for the majority of his innings.

Eventually he grew bold, after he and Derek de Boorder had put on more than 50 for the third wicket, and Faisalabad's efforts sagged as the game slipped from them. Having progressed to 50 at just under run-a-ball, McCullum took them home with a flurry of thumping hits, and secured a fine net-run-rate, should it be required further down the line.

Andrew Fidel Fernando is ESPNcricinfo's Sri Lanka correspondent. He tweets here

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Dummy4 on September 18, 2013, 17:32 GMT

    Some people criticizing FW team here. These are the players which play in FW. it is not international team so not that type of selection available.

    secondly, some people say FW is over hyped & some say that they are best or blah blah . THose who say that should know that it is not the case. The fact is that they were the least strong team in domestic circuit. they have won only 2 t20s in their whole career. apart from ajmal and misbah, no body else is of that caliber.

    Some people criticizing misbah as a captain, problem is guys that his team has won the last domestic competitions in all 3 formats this year.

  • Dummy4 on September 18, 2013, 14:16 GMT

    Don't feel bad Pakistan / Faisalabad supporters... You were simply outplayed by a far superior T20 team. A team which, with its win over the Kandurata maroons, who will beat you too, went top of the table tonight and have won 12 championship games on the trot. A team with 8 current or former internationals and Ryan ten Doeschate, a player who is better than any player in the Faisalabad line-up. Cricket isn't won on paper of course. As NZ teams, and especially this team, are also much more determined bowlers and much better fielders - attitudinally-speaking and in execution. You need to learn to stop in-fighting and squabbling and blaming your team when. at their best, they are the inferior team. You lost to a team that is deservingly packing their bags for the tournament proper.... you can just pack your bags. The Pakistan national team would lose to Otago. Credit and respect where it is due.... or you get your come-uppance. Blue 'n' Yellow Blue 'n' Yellow

  • Dummy4 on September 18, 2013, 10:25 GMT

    I was backing FW yesterday and I was hoping it was the other team to qualify along with SRH. Sadly, it did not happen. Let's hope something good happens for FW and then these two teams do qualify eventually, hopefully.

  • danish on September 18, 2013, 9:14 GMT

    disappointing to watch FW played horrible, Misbah should open the bat so he can contribute maximum, he should experiment here and see if he can win matches for FW, if he succeed as opener he can apply same formula in Pakistan team, Except Misbah, Ajmal and 35 years old Samiullah Khan rest look very ordinary, they have no technique, all they try to do is to hit 4s, they have no technique to find 1s n 2s. FW have two matches they need to learn from their mistakes quickly I hope they will do better against Sunrises

  • Dummy4 on September 18, 2013, 9:01 GMT

    missing sialkot stalion, they are world best

  • AMEER on September 18, 2013, 8:42 GMT

    i agree with the comments of Mayank Srivastav

    fw has similar story as pak team :-(

  • ESPN on September 18, 2013, 8:37 GMT

    Well we had enough about misbah. I hate this man as a captain and no doubt he's one of the worst captain ever in the history of cricket but we do not have better option that means we do not have talent but people are still saying that we have talent and we are not promoting them. Where is the talent, those who are playing in the street they need alot of grooming to become a talent.

  • Dummy4 on September 18, 2013, 8:05 GMT

    Faisalabad wolves got creamed against the Kiwi side what chances do they have against Sunrisers Hyderabad with players such as Steyn, Ishant, Dhawan, Mishra and Sammy in their line up!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Dummy4 on September 18, 2013, 7:59 GMT

    fw has similar story as pak team

  • Dummy4 on September 18, 2013, 7:45 GMT

    To all those who are cheering for Misbah:

    My friends, he is the captain and he should behave like one. He don't have to just bat and score 40-50 runs every match, rather he has to build a strategy to win matches. Did you see his strategy? When Ajmal took wicket in his first over, he didn't let him bowl a second over. Similarly, the field placing and all that stuff makes Mesbah as one of the worst captains I have seen. Play him as just a batsman, not a captain, and he might produce better results, trust me. He can't handle the pressure of being the captain.