The oldest rivalry in the history of international sports continued today as Canada and the USA took the field at the ICC America's T20 Championship in Florida.
Both teams were 3-0 heading into the game and the team of upstart Canadian's were keen to impose their mark on the tournament. Having lost this title last year in a lobsided final, Canada had revenge on its mind heading into Friday's clash and showed initative by winning the toss and putting themselves into bat.
Khushroo Wadia (56*) got Canada off to a lighting start in the game and with Jason Sandher (23), Canada were well placed for a large total. USA fought their way back into the game with a dogged effort from their spinners. None of the Canadian batsmen after 3 hit double figures and the target was a gettable 131.
USA got off to a quick start with Sushil Nadkani leading the way. Jimmy Hansra brought himself into the attack to stem the tide and the pressure began to mount on the USA. All the bowlers found themselves in the wickets and with the asking rate rising about 8, USA struggled to keep pace. Zahid Hussain held his nerves bowling the 20th over and Canada won by 10 runs.
Though not out of the woods yet, Canada's youngsters are now alone in first place with a match against last place Suriname to secure the title.
The win against a favoured American side, playing at home, was a shot in the arm for a Canadian team without many of its top players and puts Canada in place to obtain the final ICC America's trophy missing from the trophy cabinet.
President Ranjit Saini was proud of the team saying at the conclusion of the match.
Though we still have one more game to play, we are pleased with the team and our rookie captain. It just proves the point that we have been making all along. "Cricket in North America is Canada's Game". Cricket has survived and grown here despite harsh winters, short summers, a huge country and being away from major cricket centers.
The future is promising and we will take care of it in our own way. The Canadian way...respect for our differences, finding middle ways, being innovative and live within our means."
Canada takes on Suriname tomorrow.