Explosive Campbell thumps Mumbai
Ahmedabad Rockets 131 for 1 (Campbell 92*) beat Mumbai Champs 130 (van der Wath 41*) by nine wickets
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details
The chase was over in a blink. Ryan Campbell hit an explosive half-century in front of a boisterous home crowd to charge the Ahmedabad Rockets to a crushing win over the hapless Mumbai Champs, who had dawdled to 130.
"To just get past the first ball was a start for me," said Campbell, also Man of the Match, after failing in his first two innings. The relief was palpable. And what an innings.
Campbell, an explosive batsman from Western Australia, began the carnage after two quiet overs. He slammed Johan van der Wath to fine leg and the extra-cover boundary after fellow opener Parvez Aziz picked up two fours in the same over. Campbell then turned his attention to Michael Kasprowicz, hitting him first over mid-off before clearing long-off. He wasn't done, yet. In the fifth over, he hit Ranjit Khirid all around the ground in a 15-run over.
After five overs the score read 54 for 0 and though Aziz fell just after, slogging across the line, Campbell batted on fluently. He slowed down temporarily, having raced to 46 from 18 balls, but upped the tempo again to finish unbeaten on 92 from 51 balls. Victory was achieved with such ease that Mumbai were again exposed as the weakest team in the tournament.
Even in the first game, where Mumbai stretched it to the last over, the quality was below par. It was another average performance from them today. The start set the tone: Robin Morris miscued a pull, Nathan Astle flicked a slower one straight to deep square leg and Raviraj Patil ran himself out. Taufeeq Umar picked up the odd boundary and Hasan Raza dealt in singles but they couldn't create any momentum. Ahmedabad's Bhima Rao had a great day in the field, taking four catches and effecting a direct-hit run out. Rao, identified by the ICL's high performance director Jock Campbell as the fittest player at the preceding physical training camp, lived up to the high praise.
It took the entry of van der Wath at the end of the 16th over to breathe some life into the game. In the 18th over, he pulled Heath Streak for two fours and launched one over long-on and really exploded in the last over of the innings against the same bowler. The first one, a full delivery, was dismissed over long-on, the second, a slower one, was carted to cow corner before van der Wath finished off with two more sixes. He finished on 41 from 15 balls, with four sixes. Post van der Wath's arrival, the score jumped from 79 for 6 to 130 but it was too little.
The ICL caravan moved to a new venue today but encountered an old problem. The light towers crashed for the third time in the tournament, holding up play for 45 minutes. Luckily, no overs were lost, and the partisan crowd thoroughly enjoyed their team's domination.
Sriram Veera is a staff writer at Cricinfo