LPL: Russell smashes 65* off 19 in five-over contest

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West Indies all-rounder Andre Russell lit up the Lankan Premier League on Saturday, blazing to the fifth fastest T20 fifty as Colombo Kings defeated Galle Gladiators in a five-over shootout.

Rain reduced the match significantly, but it mattered little to Russell, who belted 65 not out off 19 balls to power Colombo Kings to 96-1.

The Jamaican right-hander, who opened the batting, clobbered the Gladiators bowlers, especially new-ball pair Mohammed Amir and Asitha Fernando, who went for 72 in their combined three overs. Russell struck nine fours and four sixes.

His fifty, off 14 balls, was the joint-fifth fastest in T20 cricket, behind Yuvraj Singh, Chris Gayle and Hazratullah Zazai, who all managed the feat off 12 balls, and Marcus Trescothick, who reached the landmark in 13.

Laurie Evans scored 21 off 10 to support Russell, who lost his opening partner Thikshila de Silva went for a first-ball duck with the score on 31.

Galle Gladiators replied with 62-2 from their five overs with Danushka Gunathilaka making 30* off 15.

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