Chris Jordan led Southern Brave to their first Hundred victory of 2023 in an enthralling contest, scoring a stunning 70 off 32 balls against Welsh Fire to secure a nail-biting two-run win.
England star Jordan single-handedly revived Brave’s innings. They were at a precarious 76 for 8, with Pakistan quick Haris Rauf taking three wickets. They reached a total of 147. Jordan smashed seven massive sixes and three fours, achieving his second T20 half-century in style. The 2021 winners bounced back strongly after their opening-game defeat to Trent Rockets. This was thanks to notable contributions from leg-spin sensation Rehan Ahmed, Craig Overton, and last-set hero Tymal Mills, who all claimed two wickets each.
Earlier, Brave struggled at 76 for 8 in just 76 balls, appearing destined for an embarrassing sub-three-figure total. Fast bowler Haris Rauf was the chief architect of this havoc, taking 3 for 23. He dismissed Finn Allen caught behind off a bouncer, bowled George Garton, and bounced out James Fuller with his express pace.
Shaheen Shah Afridi returned to the Ageas Bowl after three years, having previously taken four wickets in four balls in the Vitality Blast. This time, he claimed the crucial wicket of Devon Conway, who gloved behind. James Vince, Tim David, Leus du Plooy, and Rehan also fell cheaply.
Chris Jordan’s heroics came to light when he was at 8 off 14 balls, and Rehan got run out. He then unleashed a flurry of aggressive shots that energized the 12,403 fans at the Ageas Bowl. He continued his onslaught with a six off Rauf, hitting three consecutive sixes off Roelof van der Merwe’s left-arm spin. Jordan also elegantly dispatched David Payne for another six, bringing up his fifty in just 26 balls. He continued to dominate, adding two more sixes and scoring 19 runs off the last five balls in his partnership with Craig Overton, which reached 71 in just 25 balls, with Jordan contributing 62 of those runs.
Southern Brave’s Thrilling Victory in Nail-biter
Welsh Fire’s chase didn’t start well, as Joe Clarke faced a golden duck, and Luke Wells got a life after a dropped catch by David. However, Rehan’s leg spin caused problems, resulting in Wells’ dismissal after a 41-run partnership with Stephen Eskinazi, who had displayed an audacious six earlier. Subsequent wickets of Tom Abell, Glenn Phillips, and James Fuller put Southern Brave in a commanding position.