Mon, 06 Feb 2023

Dubai [UAE], January 24 (ANI): The Gulf Giants have made a rollicking start to their campaign at the inaugural edition of the ILT20, and are sitting pretty at the top of the table with eight points from five games.

Ably led by the Englishman James Vince, who has been the team's most successful batter so far, Gulf Giants got out of the blocks at a rapid pace, with the team also ticking off the boxes during the business end of the games.

"Vince's form has been outstanding; he is a high-quality player and he has been pivotal to our success so far. His captaincy has been positive, and Vince has been calm and makes good tactical decisions. And he's led from the front. Also, Shimron Hetmyer has been in great form and he's working hard too in training and he's reproduced that in the games as well. Our bowlers, who are quite experienced too, are doing well under pressure," said head coach Andy Flower.

"The likes of Chris Jordan and David Wiese have been good with the ball for us, and our fielding has been impressive too so far. Gulf Giants also benefits from the fact that a player like Dominic Drakes is performing well in training and pushing for a spot in the playing XI, so that keeps everyone on their toes," Flower added.

The former Zimbabwean captain also spoke about the talented cricketers from the UAE, who are part of the Giants' squad, and said that the local cricketers are in a good space, singling out the young Sanchit Sharma for praise.

"A top-quality tournament like this is brilliant for UAE cricket. Each side has at least 4 UAE players and we've seen some great performances from them already, which is good for the domestic circuit here. In our side, Sanchit has been doing well, he's calm under pressure and is a skilful swing bowler, while Aayan Khan's had a tougher time and Ashwanth Valthapa's also had a go. This sort of exposure is really good for these players, and good performances from them can only work well for everyone," the coach said.

Flower, who was a prolific scorer during his playing days, and often led the resistance for the Zimbabwean side, also touched upon the fact that his side's shown the stomach for a fight, an aspect which has left him mighty impressed.

"The players have always enjoyed the challenges that have come their way. It's always great to see the fight from our team whenever there is a tough situation, any coach likes to see that. It is good to see the players enjoy their challenges and battle their way out of situations. That can only augur well for the Gulf Giants team," he signed off.

Up next for the Gulf Giants will be the game against the Abu Dhabi Knight Riders in Dubai on 25th January, when they will look to consolidate their position at the top of the points table. (ANI)

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