The third day of the inaugural Major League Cricket (MLC) featured an intense rivalry between Seattle Orcas and San Francisco Unicorns at Grand Prairie Ground in Dallas. The game kicked off on July 16 at 6 AM IST.

The Seattle top-order featuring the likes of Nauman Anwar, Shehan Jayasuriya, and Heinrich Klaasen contributed significantly which allowed them to post a competitive target of 178. In response, San Francisco lost a flurry of wickets at the back end of the innings which derailed them from their chase. Eventually, they were bowled out for 142 handing Seattle a convincing victory.

On that note, let us delve into some of the top performances from the third day of the enthralling 2023 Major League Cricket (MLC) match. 

Seattle Orcas Thump The Unicorns By A Colossal Margin of 35 Runs

Seattle Orcas won the toss and made the most of the ideal batting conditions. The dismissal of premium wicketkeeper-batsman Quinton de Kock early on the in innings did not deter Seattle one bit. Nauman Anwar and Shehan Jayasuriya were able to build a successful 44-run stand for the second wicket in the space of only 4 overs. 

Following the dismissal of Nauman, Klaasen, and Jayasuriya built yet another crucial 47-run stand for the third wicket to get Settle at the 100-run mark after 12 overs. Heinrich was eventually dismissed by Plunkett in the 18th over as he holed out to deep mid-wicket while trying to up the ante. 

Shimron Hetmyer scored some runs but not at the pace he would have desired. He scored 36 (30) at a very modest strike rate of 120. He along with Shubham Ranjane stayed unbeaten at the end and dragged Seattle to a competitive first innings total of 177. The fall of Klaasen’s wicket slowed down Seattle’s scoring rate during the death overs. They could only muster 50 runs in the last 5 overs as Hetmyer failed to middle the ball to perfection. 

In response, San Francisco Unicorns got off to an electrifying start as they 67-2 inside 6 overs. Matthew Wade and Finn Allen played fiery cameos of 28 (16) and 28 (10) to exert the pressure back on Seattle. However, the Orcas bowlers struck back as Imad Wasim was the man who provided the first breakthrough. Allen was dismissed against the run of play under very unfortunate circumstances as his bat got stuck in the surface while trying to slide it over the line. He was run out by Jayasuriya on 28. 

Aussie T20 stalwarts, Aaron Finch and Marcus Stoinis took stock of the situation and added 29 runs for the third wicket at a very subdued rate. Both of them perished at the start of the 11th over in quick succession which reduced Seattle to 87-4. They slipped even further as AJ Tye and Cameron Gannon got into the act by dismissing the dangerous Corey Anderson and Tajinder Singh for cheap scores. 

Shadab Khan waged a lone battle scoring 37 of 23. But with no reliable support from the other end, the Orcas lost their way and eventually fell 36 runs short of their required target. Imad Wasim, Cameron Gannon, and Andrew Tye shared 8 wickets between them and kept the run flow pretty much under control. Harmeet Singh picked up a solitary wicket but proved to be highly economical going at just 3.75 RPO. 

Brief Scores

Seattle Orcas – 177/4 (Klaasen 53, Hetmyer 36, Plunkett 2-36, Anderson 1-19)

San Francisco Unicorns – 142/10 (Shadab 37, Allen 28, Gannon 4-23, Harmeet 1-15)

End Result: Seattle Orcas won by 35 runs. 

What to follow

Following today’s win Seattle have moved past Texas Super Kings and have reclaimed the top spot with a healthy NRR of 1.043. They will play their next game against Texas Super Kings on July 21. San Francisco have slipped to the third position and have a NRR of -0.325. They will play their next game on July 18 against Los Angeles Knight Riders.

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