Dubai Capitals, owned by the GMR Group, fell to a six-wicket defeat against the Gulf Giants in match five of ILT20 2023 at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium on Monday, January 16.

Robin Uthappa (79), Rovman Powell (38) and Mujeeb Ur Rahman (2/36) were the top performers for Dubai, while James Vince (83 not out) and Rehan Ahmed (3/28) put on match-winning displays for the Giants.

Gulf Giants won the toss and elected to bowl first. While Dubai Capitals made one change, with Dasun Shanaka replacing Yusuf Pathan, the Giants opted to play with the same team that picked up a win against Abu Dhabi Knight Riders.

The Capitals marched to a confident start with the bat, hitting 62 runs in the powerplay overs. Robin Uthappa was at the forefront of the attack with 57 runs in 29 balls, while Joe Root played spectator (four runs off seven balls).

Root was the first Dubai Capitals batter to be dismissed as Gulf Giants skipper James Vince ran him out.

Uthappa’s fine innings, 46-ball 79, came to a halt at the end of the 12th over. David Wiese’s back-of-a-length-ball pushed the former India star to flat-bat the shot towards Chris Jordan at wide long-on.

Rovman Powell, the Capitals captain, seemed on course to hit a half-century, but Rehan Ahmed stood as the speed breaker. Powell aimed to sweep over cow corner, but he misjudged Ahmed’s delivery that straight hit the stumps. The West Indian departed for 38 from 25 deliveries.

Sikandar Raza, batting at number four, remained unbeaten on 30 as Dubai Capitals finished their innings at 182/8.

With 41 runs in the opening five overs, the Gulf Giants confidently began their run chase of 183 runs until they faced a special over from Mujeeb Ur Rahman.

The Afghanistan spinner grabbed the crucial wickets of Rehan Ahmed (28) and Ollie Pope (0) to eliminate the early pressure on the Capitals while defending their score.

James Vince and Gerhard Erasmus got the Gulf Giants back on track with their half-centuries until Rovman Powell ran out Erasmus at the non-striker’s end for 52.

With the Giants requiring 15 from 18, Powell struck a timely breakthrough as he grabbed the vital scalp of Shimron Hetmyer. His full-length ball delivery forced Hetmyer to scoop a shot towards long-on, where Joe Root completed a simple catch.

While Vince remained unbeaten on 83, David Wiese hit the winning runs to hand Dubai Capitals the first loss of their ILT20 campaign.