T20 World Cup: USA thump Canada by seven wickets

Batting first, Canada posted 194 for five, but USA turned what could have been a tricky chase into a cruise, completing the task with as many as 14 balls to spare.
United States' Aaron Jones reacts after hitting the winning runs during the men's T20 World Cup cricket match between the United States and Canada at Grand Prairie Stadium, in Grand Prairie, Texas.
United States' Aaron Jones reacts after hitting the winning runs during the men's T20 World Cup cricket match between the United States and Canada at Grand Prairie Stadium, in Grand Prairie, Texas.(Photo | AP)

DALLAS: Tournament co-hosts USA announced their arrival in top-flight cricket in spectacular fashion as Aaron Jones led a seven-wicket pasting of Canada with a 40-ball 94 in the opening match of the T20 World Cup here.

Batting first, Canada posted 194 for five, but USA turned what could have been a tricky chase into a cruise, completing the task with as many as 14 balls to spare.

America's very own Jones, who was born in Queens, a New York City borough, smashed 10 sixes and four boundaries to make a statement on behalf of the team full of expatriates.

While Jones was without an iota of doubt the star batter of the match, Andries Gous too made an impression with his 65 off 46 balls.

Gous hit seven fours and three sixes during his stay in the middle after USA lost two wickets with just 42 runs on the board.

It was fitting that Jones finished the chase with a pair of sixes.

Asked to bat first, Canada were off to a decent start with the opening duo of Navneet Dhaliwal and Aaron Johnson (23) putting on 43 runs in just over five overs at the Grand Prairie Stadium.

Mumbai-born left-arm spinner Harmeet Singh effected the first breakthrough of the tournament proper when he dismissed Johnson in the sixth over.

Pargat Singh, another player Canadian player of Indian origin, fell cheaply for five runs when he was run out in the eighth over.

However, Dhaliwal found an able ally in Nicholas Kirton, who got his runs at a brisk pace while hitting three boundaries and two sixes. Dhaliwal found the fence thrice and cleared it six times during his 66-run partnership with the left-handed Kirton.

After the others had failed, it took former New Zealand player Corey Anderson to break the partnership between Dhaliwal and Kirton as he had the former caught by Jessy Singh at the start of the 15th over.

The dismissal of Dhaliwal did not have any bearing on Canada's game plan thanks to wicketkeeper Shreyas Movva's enterprise. The right-handed batter blazed away to 32 off 16 balls, striking two sixes and as many fours during his cameo to lift Canada's scoring rate.

Dilpreet Bajwa chipped in with a five-ball 11 after Kirton's departure, as Canada posted a challenging total on the board.

The USA however, after a wobble initially, completed the task to open their account in their very first match in the World Cup.

The third-wicket stand between Jones and Gous produced 131 runs, laying the foundation of a fine victory on their home turf.

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