Doha, Qatar | Asia Lions openers Upul Tharanga and Tillakaratne Dilshan cracked breezy half-centuries to blow away the World Giants and emerge as the new champions of the LLC-Legends League Cricket Masters.

In the final held at the Asian Town Cricket Stadium in Doha, Asia Lions, scored an emphatic seven-wicket victory with 23 balls to spare.

World Giants Innings Overview

World Giants had won the toss and elected to bat with Lendl Simmons and Morne van Wyk opening the innings. Asia Lions’ left-arm spinner Abdur Razzak opened the bowling giving away just three runs. Left-arm pacer Sohail Tanvir, as usual, generated good pace off the wicket and the first boundary of the final came from Simmons, who edged through the gap in the slip region. Razzak struck with the third ball of the third over to dismiss van Wyk, who, while going for a cut, inside-edged it onto his wicket for a duck. Razzak also took the valuable wicket of skipper Shane Watson with the fifth delivery trapping him leg-before through an arm ball for a duck.

Tanvir bowled a tighter fourth over giving away just two runs. At the end of the powerplay, World Giants were 31 for 3. Kallis and Ross Taylor scored singles off Mohammad Hafeez’s seventh over.  Afridi, who introduced himself for the eighth over, gave away only five runs. Razzak bowled his final over brilliantly beating Kallis repeatedly, and giving away just two runs.

Although Kallis slog-swept Afridi for a six in the 12th over, runs were still hard to come. Taylor and Kallis recorded their 50-run partnership in 7.3 overs when Kallis hit Thisara Perera for a boundary to fine leg.

In the 15th over, Kallis and Taylor took one boundary each off Afridi. World Giants were still ten runs short of the 100-run mark. Kallis reached his half-century in 41 balls lifting Perera for a six to mid-wicket. The pair’s 92 runs in 11.1 overs literally lifted World Giants to a challenging total. In the last over bowled by Udana, Kallis hit two consecutive boundaries off the second and third deliveries to remain unconquered on 78.

Asia Lions the 2023 champions of the LLC-Legends League Cricket Masters held at the Asian Town Cricket Stadium in Doha, Qatar – LLC/Allsportspk

Asia Lions’ Innings OverviewChasing the target, Asia Lions’ consistent openers Upul Tharanga and Tillakaratne Dilshan began to stroke smoothly. They took 16 runs off the first over.  In the second over, Tharanga pulled Brett Lee for a boundary. World Giants then replaced the costly Patel with Ricardo Powell. Tharanga chopped Powell to the third man for a boundary. The pair recorded their 50 runs partnership in 4.5 overs with Tharanga hitting Powell for a six.

Tharanga smashed Powell’s last ball of the fifth over too for a six to long-on.  Dilshan greeted Chris Mpofu with two consecutive boundaries. 72 runs were piled up from the powerplay.

Hoping to stop the run flow, World Giants introduced Monty Panesar. He too was not spared by Dilsan who drove him through extra cover for another boundary and took 13 runs off the over. Desperately looking for a breakthrough, Brett Lee was introduced for the eighth over. There was no impact of the bowling change. The 100-run partnership too came in 8.3 overs.

Asia Lions took the game totally away from World Giants with Dilshan too smashing Best for a boundary to mid-wicket and reaching his half-century in 32 balls with eight boundaries. The 115 runs partnership ended when Lee had Tharanga clean bowled for 57.

Asia Lions needed only 33 runs in the last ten overs. Dilshan was bowled out by Samit Patel for 58 when only 16 runs were needed for the victory in 41 balls.  Mohammad Hafeez and Misbah Ul Haq steered their team to victory remaining unbeaten with nine runs each.

Brief scores:

Asia Lions bt World Giants by 7 wkts.

World Giants 147 for 4 in 20 overs (Jacques Kallis 78n.o, Ross Taylor 32, Abdur Razzak 2 for 14)

Asia Lions 148 for 3 in 16.1 overs (Upul Tharanga 57, Tillakaratne Dilshan 58)

Player of the Match: Abdur Razzak

India Maharajas Eliminated; All Set For Finals

Asia Lions roared past India Maharajas with a clinical all-round performance LLC-Legends League Cricket Masters eliminator held at the Asian Town Cricket Stadium in Doha. 

The Asia Lions will meet the World Giants in the title clash on Monday, 20th March.

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Asia Lions on qualifying for the finals of LLC-Legends League Cricket Masters held at the Asian Town Cricket Stadium in Doha – LLC/Allsportspk 

They avenged their ten-wicket defeat to India Maharajas in their last match to register an emphatic 85-run victory. Batting first, and posting a whopping total of 191 for 5 in 20 overs, Asia Lions bowled out India Maharajas for a paltry 106 runs in 16.4 overs. India Maharajas supporters had nothing to cheer except for their skipper Gautam Gambhir’s elegant knock of 32.

The architects of Asia Lions’ victory were opener Upul Tharanga, who cracked 50 off 31 balls with seven boundaries and a six, and his partner Tillakaratne Dilshan, who scored a run-a-ball 27 runs.  Together they put on an 83 runs partnership in 8.5 overs to set the base for a huge total. 

Brief scores:

Asia Lions beat India Maharajas by 85 runs.

Asia Lions 191 for 5 in 20 overs 

India Maharajas 106 in 16.4 overs 

Player of the Match: Upul Tharanga

Maharajas vs Asia Lions Set To Play Eliminator

The LLC-Legends League Cricket Masters has reached its final stages. India Maharajas have come close to winning twice, and once they have shown what they are capable of. But after the loss to the World Giants on March 15, 2023, it is the last chance for the Maharajas to make it to the final as they face the Asia Lions in the eliminator match on Saturday, March 18, 2023, at the Asian Town Cricket Stadium in Doha.

LLC Masters Trophy,Doha Qatar – LLC/Allsportspk

Often regarded as one of the greatest Twenty20 players for India. Suresh Raina, who is playing for the India Maharajas, spoke about the tournament, his performance, and a number of topics surrounding Indian cricket.
Speaking about the performance in the match against the World Giants, Suresh Raina said, “I think we didn’t bowl well in the power play, but we came back really strongly later. Probably, I would say we could have scored a little more, I would say we were 15–20 runs short. The wicket was pretty slow, and it was very challenging for the batters to rotate the strike. I think we need to step up in the next game. Now we are in a do-or-die situation, it will be our last game if we win, and then we will qualify. How we make a comeback is going to be pretty exciting.

Commenting on the novelty factor associated with the LLC Masters, Raina said, “The kind of hospitality that we have received from LLC is amazing. We are all having fun. We are playing cricket with our old friends and teammates, those with whom we have won the World Cup, played ODIs, test matches, and even the IPL; in a way, we are playing with all the legends. It all brings back memories of when we were playing together, and everyone is enjoying themselves. The whole purpose of the LLC Masters is to spend as much time as possible playing together and entertaining the crowds.


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