Afghani prodigy Mujeeb Ur Rahman was the talk of the town yesterday in the 2020 Hero Caribbean Premier League, as he put in a spectacular display of spin bowling to help his franchise Jamaica Tallawahs to a memorable win. 

Playing against last season’s finalists Guyana Amazon Warriors, the teenager was tasked with bowling in the powerplay against Caribbean cricket stalwarts like Shimron Hetmyer, Nicholas Pooran and Brandon King, and he duly obliged by picking some early wickets for his franchise. Mujeeb got the wickets of Hetmyer and Pooran, with the latter beaten all ends up by a quicker one that skidded through the surface. 

Despite bowling two of his overs in the powerplay, the mystery spinner conceded just five runs and also delivered a maiden over. Mujeeb, who represents Kings XI Punjab in the Dream11 Indian Premier League, also accounted for the wicket of Amazon Warriors captain Chris Green, who was trapped by the carrom ball and could only edge one to the slip fielder.

The Afghani bowler ended with spellbinding figures of 3/11 as his efforts ensured his side were chasing a meagre target of 114, and set up a comfortable five wicket win for the Tallawahs. For his good display with the ball in the powerplay overs as well as in the death, Mujeeb was awarded the Man of the Match accolade.  

This is Mujeeb’s second consecutive three-wicket haul in the CPL, and has bumped him up to second place in the list of leading wicket-takers so far in the competition with nine scalps to his name, one behind New Zealand’s Scott Kuggeleijn. 

“Early wickets cost us the game. Their spinners bowled really really well upfront,” said Guyana Amazon Warriors skipper Chris Green in the post match interview, speaking in reference to Mujeeb’s match-winning spell. 

Pooran shows promise

Earlier in the week, Nicholas Pooran of the West Indies impressed as he almost single handedly helped his franchise Guyana Amazon Warriors get over the line against the St. Lucia Zouks. The southpaw, who represents Kings XI Punjab in the IPL, put in a gutsy performance on a sluggish, slow wicket to top score with 68 and keep his side in the chase despite his team being 9/3 after five overs. 

The 24-year-old is the second highest run getter for his franchise so far in CPL 2020, with 105 runs after five matches. With Pooran and Mujeeb finding form at the right time in the Caribbean Premier League, KXIP fans would hope for the same to continue as IPL 2020 rings closer.