Xtra Time Web Desk: Ashley Renaldo Nurse lit up the Eden Gardens on Saturday night with an amazing display of power as the India Capitals and Gujarat Giants clashed in the opening game of the Legends League Cricket 2022, which is being held in India for the first time.
After Giants’ captain Virender Sehwag invited the Capitals to bat first, the strong crowd at the ground must have expected to witness a Jacques Kallis special. But while the Capitals captain did not have good day with the bat, failing to open his account, it was Nurse who stole the spotlight and how!
The 33-year-old Barbados-born Nurse came in to bat at No.6 and treated the fans with an extraordinary show of big-hitting. It wouldn’t be wrong to say that it was Nurse’s healing touch that rescued the Capitals innings after they were reduced to 74/6 by the 12th over.
Nine monstrous sixes and eight boundaries helped Nurse to remain not out on 103 off just 43 balls as he propelled the Capitals’ total to 179/7 in 20 overs.
The Giants, however, dictated terms initially with left-arm orthodox spinner KP Apanna bamboozling the Capitals batters with his craft. Like Nurse, Apanna proved to be quite an unexpected hero in a bowling line-up that had names like Mitchell McClenaghan and Gaeme Swann.
But the 33-year-old, who played first-class cricket for Karnataka, stunned the Capitals dismissing Hamilton Masakadza and Kallis in the third over of the innings. The dismissal of Kallis was a classic left-armer’s delivery and foxed the batter.
Apanna finished with figures of 4-0-36-2, but it could have been better had a close lbw call against Nurse gone in his favour.