Gent CC-1 – Won by 108 runs
Author: K V S
Maiden fifty as a captain for Asijit. What an innings to watch! But was it not enough for the 12 Stars to chase the score of 219?
It was a bright, sunny and pleasant day – a great day for cricket. Gent CC won the toss and chose to bat first. Captain Asi had set the strategy clearly and gave the team an inspirational prep-talk. He asked the team to stick to the strategy and not worry about the result of the game.
12 Stars got in with a poor start with opening bowlers failing to get the line properly. One of those bad days where you start off with 16 runs in your first over. The runs kept leaking from the start. Credits to the opposition batsmen who were aggressive from the beginning. 12 Stars were not converting the chances too. There were close to 4 catch drops. Some of them were difficult, but those were crucial ones considering the batsman. Is the catch drop infectious? All they need is one good catch to be back in the game. 12Stars knew that if they take the top 3 batsmen out then the opposition will crumble. Since the opening bowlers were leaking a lot of runs captain decided to bring in Srini and Ravi. They did a fabulous job to control the runs. From 58-0 in 6 overs Gent CC scored 79-0 in 10 overs. End of powerplay. Srini’s spell was crucial, he bowled 6.0 overs and gave only 24 runs. He controlled the runs in one end that made the batsmen to make mistakes in the other end.
Asi brought in Nauman bhai. When fielders were spread 12Stars knew catches were coming. JD kept warning everyone in the outfield to be ready for a catch. In fact, he called out names individually before every ball was bowled. And there it came towards Ravi at long on, but wait Ravi was walking slowly. Out of nowhere Rahul ran fast towards the ball from long off. It was definitely not his catch, he had to run farther and not in his reach too. He fell down while attempting to catch the ball and injured his knee again. Oops, uneven ground and a poor call caused him this. Stretcher please. 12 Stars lost their first wicket even before they could get the first wicket of Gent CC. 17 overs 118-0. Drinks break…….
After drinks captain called everyone for a quick chat. “Guys please attempt your catches. We are going to get a lot of catches from now on”. First ball after drinks, catch did come, Nauman was bowling and the batsman slogged towards Amrullah in sweeper cover. What a catch! 12 Stars needed that breakthrough. And then another catch towards deep mid-wicket of Ravi’s bowling. This time a brilliant catch by Srini, he judged the ball so well. It was a crucial wicket. It was Srini’s day with the ball, he was catching every ball. Both the openers gone. 12 Stars were geared up! No more drops, Ravi took a wicket again in his next over – caught and bowled. He made it look easy. He had to stretch towards his left to dive and catch the ball. Yes, catching is infectious.12 Stars started to convert all the opportunities to wickets. Next was a run out from Subu. Team was overjoyed after that run out.
Ishaq was brought in. He is the new superstar in 12 Stars now. He was hit for few sixes but they were all of full tosses. When he pitched the ball it was unplayable. He took 4 wickets. Yet another brilliant spell. Amrullah bowled really well in the other end to support Ishaq. Amrullah and Sharifullah (sub for Rahul) were brilliant in the field. They stopped a lot of boundaries. Debutante Ankit took a catch too in deep square leg. Ravi took two brilliant catches. For one of those catches, he had to run from long on to long off. What a catch! I would pay to watch him field. After 2nd drinks captain planned to bring in Ravi to wrap it up. Like JD’s magical prediction opponents lost their last wicket exactly at 38.2 Overs.
Now 12 Stars needed 219 to win this game. What a comeback and turnaround!
12 Stars has lost their opener, Rahul already. Hope he recovers from the knee injury soon. Asijit decided to send Sunil and Subu to open the innings. Sunil got out of the first ball. It was a quick in-swinger hit on top of the off stump. He didn’t expect that big in cutter. Unfortunate! Ravi came in next and hit the ball out of the park. It was the 2nd ball he faced. Ravi’s confidence is unbelievable. But he got out too after scoring some shots. 6 overs 16-2. Asijit came in and he wanted a long partnership. With his constant talk and guidance, Subu and Asi managed a 56 runs partnership. After scoring some boundaries Subu got out in 17th over. It was a suicidal run out. What a blunder!
With Srini and Asi on crease 12 Stars were longing for a big partnership. Hapless dismissal shattered everyone’s hope – Srini got inside edged and bowled. Asi was playing so well in the other end. It was glorious to watch him bat but not even one batsman could stay and support him. While batsmen were getting out in the other end Asi managed to score a brilliant 51. 12 Stars ended 110/9 in 30.4 overs.
12 Stars were short of batsmen and unfortunately missed Rahul’s batting. Overall, it was a good day of cricket with a lot of learning. Great comeback during first innings with brilliant fielding efforts. Great bowling by Ishaq, Ravi, Nauman, Srini and Amrullah. Lot of things to learning in batting too.
Hope 12Stars learn from their mistakes and comeback stronger.
“We will come back stronger!” 1…2…3…12Stars!