Cricket

Sussex, Eagles lock horns in make-or-break tie

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United in their plight and their back against the wall, Sussex Sharks and Diamond Eagles will hurl themselves at each other’s throat for a win that would prise open the Super Eight door for them in the Champions League Twenty20 here tomorrow.

Both thoroughly outplayed in their respective Group B openers against a markedly superior New South Wales, it’s an uncomplicated situation where the winner would breeze into Super Eight and the losers catch an early home-bound flight.

The Eagles, under Boeta Dippenaar, would have to pull up their socks if they are to extend their stay in the high-profile tournament.

On a tricky pitch, Eagles bowlers did not really set the tournament alight even though they restricted NSW to a modest 144 for six. Among their bowlers, Victor Mpitsang impressed against NSW, as did Shadly van Schalkwyk, and they would have to put up an improved show in this game.

Eagles batsmen, in contrast, have been a huge let down with the exception of Ryan McLaren, whose gritty 37-ball 40 was one of the two double digit scores against NSW.

Dippenaar needs to lead from the front, more so because of his familiarity with the Indian conditions.

Sussex’s lack of penetration in their bowling unit has been the bane of the English side and even though they restricted NSW to 130, they could claim just two wickets.

Their batting has been equally lacklustre. Chris Nash got a start against NSW but lacked aggression, while stand-in skipper Ed Joyce did not trouble the scorer.

Teams (From):

Sussex Sharks: Michael Yardy (c), Will Beer, Ben Brown, Piyush Chawla, Joe Gatting, Rory Hamilton—Brown, Andy Hodd (wk), Ed Joyce, Chad Keegan, James Kirtley, Robin Martin—Jenkins, Chris Nash, Dwayne Smith, Luke Wright and Yasir Arafat.

Golden Eagles: Boeta Dippenaar (c), Ryan Bailey, Jandre Coetzee, Cornelius de Villiers, Dillon du Preez, Dean Elgar, Reeza Hendricks, Alan Kruger, Adrian McLaren (wk), Ryan McLaren, Victor Mpitsang, Rilee Rossouw, Thandi Tshabalala, Shadley van Schalkwyk and Morne van Wyk

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Printable version | Dec 7, 2019 10:52:19 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/cricket/Sussex-Eagles-lock-horns-in-make-or-break-tie/article16886169.ece

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