10 Oct 2009

NSW cruise to victory at Champions League 20/20 tournament

8:50 am on 10 October 2009

Skipper Simon Katich starred and his bowlers dominated as NSW scored a 53 run win over South Africa's Diamond Eagles in their opening Champions League Twenty20 cricket clash in India.

The Left-handed Katich (53 off 41 balls) played a classy innings to help NSW to 6-144 on a pitch devoid of grass.

The skipper then produced two direct hit runouts and took a catch as the Eagles slumped to 6-36 in the 11th over and finally limped to 9-91 against a near Test-strength Blues attack.

Paceman Brett Lee (1-14) trapped Rilee Rosouw (1) with the final ball of the first over and the Eagles never recovered.

Katich ran out Adrian McLaren (11 off 9) from mid on and Stuart Clark (3-12) had Morne van Wyke (0) caught at short midwicket by Phil Hughes off his first delivery as the Eagles slumped to 3-14.

Clark had Eagles skipper Boeta Dippenaar (7) caught at mid off by the ubiquitous Katich and spinner Nathan Hauritz (1-13) had Dean Elgar (2) stumped by Daniel Smith.

Katich tightened the screw by running out Ryan Bailey (8) from mid off, before a seventh-wicket stand of 26 dominated by Ryan McLaren (40 off 37) temporarily denied the Blues inevitable march to victory.

Earlier, Katich controlled the first part of the NSW innings and was one of the few batsmen to look at ease on the slow pitch.

He struck six fours and two sixes and added 79 in just under 11 overs with David Warner (23 off 31) for the second wicket after Phil Hughes (1) perished in the third over.

Enterprising late innings hitting from Moises Henriques (27 off 19) who swatted three sixes, and Ben Rohrer (22 not out of 15) steered NSW to what seemed a competitive rather than formidable total.