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Sehwag century propels Gemini Arabians to semi-finals

Virender Sehwag continued his onslaught scoring 134 runs off 63 deliveries against the Sagittarius Strikers.
Virender Sehwag continued his onslaught scoring 134 runs off 63 deliveries against the Sagittarius Strikers.

Gemini Arabians 224-7 (Sehwag 134) beat
Sagittarius Strikes 212-9 (Farhat 51) by 12 runs
10th match, Masters Champions League, Sharjah

Virender Sehwag produced a masterclass innings notching a 63-ball 134 as Gemini Arabians defeated Sagittarius Strikers by 10 runs in a high-scoring encounter in Sharjah to become the first team to reach the semi-finals of the Masters Champions League.

Once again Gemini Arabians continued with their trend in the tournament deciding to bat first after winning the toss.

Sehwag (134) and Jacques Rudolph (27) scored eight boundaries and four sixes to take the Arabians to 71 for naught in the powerplay.

Sehwag brought up his half-century off 23 deliveries but Krishmar Santokie (5-30) dismissed Rudolph (27) ending the 86-run stand.

The decisive blow for the Strikers came in the form of the second wicket partnership between Sehwag and Kumar Sangakkara (51) as they added 135 runs off just 67 deliveries.

Sehwag reached his century after scoring two consecutive fours and sixes off 47 deliveries while Sangakkara brought his fifty off 31 deliveries.

Sagittarius Strikers managed to pick five wickets in the last nine deliveries but the damage was already done as Gemini Arabians posted 224 for seven in the 20 overs. Sanotkie picked a five-wicket haul for the Strikers.

Sagittarius Strikers got off to a worst possible start losing Adam Gilchrist (0) in the first over of the chase. Despite losing Mahela Jayawardene (20) and Michael Carberry (14), the Strikers maintained a healthy run rate scoring 108 for three at the half-way mark.

However, things went haywire for the Strikers when Muttiah Muralitharan (3-38) and Saqlain Mushtaq (1-42) struck four times in the next six overs leaving the lower order to get 69 runs off the final four overs.

Yasir Arafat (32) and Santokie (23 not out) struck three sixes each but they eventually fell short of the target by 13 runs.

The win has also ensured a semi-final berth for the Gemini Arabians with Sehwag bagging the man of the match award for the second time.

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