Abu Dhabi: Team Abu Dhabi kicked off their season with a win against Bangla Tigers in their opening encounter of Season 5 of Abu Dhabi T10. Chris Gayle’s unbeaten innings of 49 runs from 23 balls ensured Abu Dhabi a 40-run win over Bangla Tigers, who were chasing a massive target of 146 at the Zayed Cricket Stadium here on Friday.

Other than Gayle, Paul Stirling (Ireland) played an impactful innings scoring 59 runs off just 23 balls. Stirling’s inning was instrumental in keeping the run rate in contention for the team. Marchant de Lange’s excellent spell of 5/23 put the final nail in the coffin as Bangla Tigers couldn’t chase the target.

Hazratullah Zazai and Benny Howell built a partnership of 28 runs and took the Tigers to 71/4 in six overs, but De Lange tilted the match in favour of Team Abu Dhabi by dismissing Benny Howell, Hazratullah Zazai, and James Faulkner in the same over, leaving the Bangla Tigers reeling at 81/7. Thereafter, Team Abu Dhabi bowled three economical overs back to back as Tigers could only manage 105/8 after 10 overs.

Philip Salt and Paul Stirling opened the innings for Team Abu Dhabi and got off to a brilliant start by hitting a six and a four in the first over of the match. However, Philip Salt got run-out while stealing a run. Captain Liam Livingstone who came in with a reputation smashed James Faulkner for two consecutive sixes in the second over, but Faulkner had the last laugh as he bowled him out in the same over.

Brief scores: Team Abu Dhabi 145/4 in 10 overs (Paul Stirling 59, Chris Gayle 49*), Bangla Tigers 105/8 (Andre Fletcher 24; Marchant de Lange 5/23)

Inputs from IANS