The Bold Voice of J&K

USA thump Canada by seven wickets, begin tryst with top-flight cricket in style

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Agency

DALLAS: USA announced their arrival in top-flight cricket in spectacular fashion as Aaron Jones introduced himself with a 40-ball 94 in a seven-wicket hammering of Canada in the opening match of the T20 World Cup here. Batting first, Canada posted 194 for five, but USA turned what could have been a tricky chase into a cruise, completing the task with as many as 14 balls to spare. America’s very own Jones, who was born in Queens, a New York City borough, smashed 10 sixes and four boundaries to make a statement on behalf of the team full of expatriates.
While Jones was without an iota of doubt the star batter of the match, Andries Gous too made an impression with his 65 off 46 balls. Gous hit seven fours and three sixes during his stay in the middle, after USA lost two wickets with just 42 runs on the board. It was fitting that Jones finished the chase with a pair of sixes.
Before that, left-arm seamer Kaleem Sana gave Canada the perfect start, dismissing the dangerous Steve Taylor for a duck. Gous joined skipper Monank Patel, and the duo tried to up the scoring rate with a flurry of boundaries.
Canada, however, maintained discipline with the ball and soon struck again with Monank’s wicket. The batter fell a run-a-ball 16 while trying to take on Dillon Heyliger.
A 19-run over against Nikhil Dutta, featuring a six each for Gous and Aaron Jones, helped pick the USA rate up.
Jones continued to attack, hitting Canada skipper Saad Bin Zafar for a six and a four in the 10th over.
The duo continued going for their shots, and pumped up the USA scoring rate. From 81/2, USA added 45 runs over the next three overs. Jones hit three sixes off Saad in the 13th over, reaching the fastest T20I fifty for his side in the same over, from merely 22 balls.
Gous reached a fifty off his own in the next over, and survived a scare after he hit one straight to Dilpreet off Gordon, but the pacer had bowled a no-ball. His partner, Jones took advantage of the free hit and hit his eighth six off the next ball. The duo brought up their 100-run stand off merely 45 balls.
Earlier, Canada were off to a decent start with the opening duo of Navneet Dhaliwal and Aaron Johnson (23) putting on 43 runs in just over five overs at the Grand Prairie Stadium.
Mumbai-born left-arm spinner Harmeet Singh effected the first breakthrough of the tournament proper when he dismissed Johnson in the sixth over.

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