HomeNewsMurali's MCC beaten by Sussex in Emirates T20 final
Murali's MCC beaten by Sussex in Emirates T20 final
Published: 21 March 2014
Muttiah Muralitharan in action
An MCC team led by Muttiah Muralitharan lost to Sussex Sharks by 12 runs in the final of the Emirates T20 Tournament in Dubai.
MCC never looked like chasing down Sussex's target of 151, despite a late rally from Middlesex's Ollie Rayner, who finished with an unbeaten half century.
They got off to the worst possible start when they lost Luis Reece - man of the match in the semi-final - fell in the first over, and Sussex always looked to have the chase under control.
Harry Finch earlier lead the way for the Sharks - who have now won the competition three years in a row - with an unbeaten 62, backed up by 37 not out by captain Rory Hamilton-Brown.
England wicket-keeper Matt Prior made a good start to his pre-season with 35 earlier in the piece.
MCC's captain, Kyle Hogg and Harry Gurney picked up a wicket apiece for MCC.
Murali captains MCC
Murali's men had earlier scraped past a Kerala Premier League XI in the second semi-final, holding on to win by just two runs.
After Sussex kicked off the tournament by beating Lancashire Lightening, MCC batted first and reached a competitve 158/5 in their 20 overs.
Reece, the young Lancashire opener, top scored with 61 - including nine fours and a six- while Sri Lanka's Test wicket-keeper Prasanna Jayawardene made a brisk 33.
In reply MCC initially appeared to have the match completely under control when seamers Gurney and Hogg conjured early strikes, and the KPL XI slumped to 44/5 at one stage, with Monty Panesar (3/26) and Andre Adams (2/21) also claiming scalps.
Number eight Pervaiz Nasir gave the favourites a real scare though, clubbing an unbeaten 56 off just 31 balls.
But it was number ten CTK Masood rather than Nasir on strike for the final ball with four needed, and his powerful drive clattered into the stumps at the bowler's end.