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Super8 Game of the Season !!
24 Aug 2013
Nice bright day at Mark Twain which has somehow this season turned into a Pimlico like field. Outfield is heavy with all the weed and grass combo all over the place. Ankit was leading this BIG game in Viral's absence and won the toss again for us and opted to bat first. Raj (04) and Tarun (04) started the innings carefully but didn't last long as Adil Bhatti was steaming in from the far side. He was bowling with express pace and precision and and didn't miss the timber behind the batsmen. Soon Anil Bhai and Pradeep went in looked good from the word Go !! Both ran so hard and fast that the Lions youngsters could not keep up with them. There were overthrows, dismay and a sudden lull on the field as there was no way they could keep these two boys from running at will. Boundaries were hard to come due to the thick and slow outfield so running between the wickets was key. But Anil Bhai hit couple of big sixes off bad balls which were few. Both Anil Bhai (53) and Pradeep (58) played a chance-less innings and this 100 plus run partnership gave us the start we wanted. Finally these two super-heros played some tired shots and got out with only a few overs left on the board. Vijay (4) and Jagan (0) went in next to bump up the score from the word go but didn't last long. We were 145 for 6 by now and needed a few more to get to a winning total. Sameer and Palash went in next when a bad judgement by Palash cost him his wicket to a direct hit by Akash at the non-strikers end. But it turned out to be a blessing in disguise for WCC as Rajiv walked in next and Lions thought of ending with a spinner instead ;) Sameer (12) played sensibly and Rajiv (23) whacked three big ones. And I mean BIG ones as they didn't even go looking for the balls ;) Sameer soon perished in the second last over and Ankit (2) stayed till the end with Rajiv who gave us a good total of 191 to defend.
191 at Mark Twain back in the day would be an easy target but given the outfield it would be tough to chase in a big game. But Lions had the youth on their side to get there. Mr. Dependable Jagan started from one end and Ankit from the other. Yes you read that right !! ;) Ankit read the situation well and put himself in-charge. Jaggu Dada as usual kept the batsmen quiet at his end and creating the much needed pressure. Ankit on the other end got rid of dangerous Deepak P and Viking's Sajid where the ball crashed into their stumps. That was the start we were looking for. Akash P was holding one end and soon Adil B joined him and they looked dangerous as they would rotate the strike at will and whack the bad balls out of the park. Soon Vijay was brought into the attack and he got rid of Akash who was looking to play another long innings against WCC Anil Bhai finishing it off with a safe catch. Sunil P came in and started off trying to blast our bowlers but Sameer was bowling an impeccable line that day. Sunil hit the ball hard that went high but to a the safe hands of Pradeep who took an Anil Kumble type diving catch ;). Ankit Sehgal joined Adil and were the last recongnised pair to take care of. We dropped Ankit soon of Sameer's bowling and we all know how costly that could be. But not today my friends not today. Another bowling change by Ankit gets Jagdish A into the attack who setup Ankit S brilliantly. Jagdish A surprised Ankit and us with a quick yorker which came out of nowhere. The ball went like a rocket and crashed into the stumps, a short of legth ball is what Ankit was expecting. Faisal Tanoli walks in next and doesn't last long as Vijay was almost unplayable that day. Tanoli had a tough time but edged on into Rajiv's gloves. But the wicket of the day was Adil's although Sameer bowled a beautiful ball it was Tarun's wicket. TC was in his usual slip position and it was a best diving catch of the season. They were 90 for 8 and it was all over. But the rest of their tail were trying to get some batting practice and hung around for a long time adding 25-30 runs till Jaggu dada like most times got his first wicket of the game in his second spell ;) Sameer got the last wicket and Lions finished at 115 for 10 in 34 overs.
It was a great game in many ways but the batting efforts of Anil Bhai and Pradeep sealed the deal for us with their half centuries. Rajiv's cameo towards the end got us to 191 which was a 300 like score given the conditions. The bowlers joined the party and made this a perfect win as all departments fired to their potential. Excellent bowling changes by Ankit who did some early damage himself. Let us keep this discipline going into our next two remaining league games and playoffs.
Congratulations WCC for winning the Super8 trophy !!
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