By Sudharsan Ramarao
Here are a few summary of games from the last two weeks in the Capital District Cricket Association.
JET Albany trounce the Panthers
Losing the toss and being put in to bat first, the JETs put on a batting masterclass as they piled on a mammoth 220 in their 30 overs. Their openers Vishal Sridhar and Pardha Phani started their innings slowly and cautiously with the intent of not giving away too many wickets to the new ball. Their lower middle order took on the good start and gave the much-needed momentum in upping the scoring rate. Chaitanya Donthineni scored a run a ball 22 with 2 sixes in it, chakradhar Reddy scored 24 in just 11 balls with 2 sixes in it and Sahil Chaudhry scored a run a ball 31 while coming in at 7.
But it was the innings of Anand Kalukuri, their top order batsman who surprisingly came at 9, that took the game away from the panthers.
Coming in at 9, he played with a new-found freedom and gave the finishing touches to the innings that was already looking far out of Panther’s reach. He scored a brilliant half century in just 27 balls that included 4 huge sixes and 3 boundaries. The next highest score was wides that fetched the JETs 42 free runs.
Chasing 221 in 30 overs, the Panthers were never in the game as none of the batsman carried on with their starts and played the anchor role that their innings needed. Christopher Selvaraj fought against his aggressive instincts and made a sedate 32 balls 27. For the Jets, Vishwa Velichala picked up 2 wickets and their slow off spinner Vishal Sridhar bagged 4 wickets including a hattrick and finished off the Panthers innings. For his all-round effort with both bat and the ball, Vishal Sridhar was adjudged the Man of the match.
Knights of Albany tame the Gujarat Lions
Batting first on a damp soft surface against a highly rated Knights bowling attack, the Gujarat Lions faltered through their innings folding for just 61 in 16 overs. With conditions conducive for swing bowling, Knights allrounder Vamsidhar Varmakonda put on a stellar bowling show capturing the first 5 wicket haul of the season. Bowling with good pace and moving the ball off the seam and in the air, Vamsi posed tough questions to the Lions batsman that they couldn’t answer.
He had Chinmay Ghag and Krunal Patel playing on to their stumps, Ajaypal Reddy caught at mid-off while trying to go over the top and Bhavik Dalsania caught and bowled while trying to force a pull shot. The best of them all was the wicket of Mansij Rai Sharma who had no clue to an out-swinger that pitched on a good length and gave an easy catch to the waiting second slip. This was Vamsi’s first ever 5 wicket haul for the Knights. Hareesh Atluri did the supporting job picking up 2 wickets. For the Lions, none of the batsman crossed 2 figures except for Sunil Kumar shah.
Chasing a low 62 to win, the Knights coasted along and reached their target in their 18th over. Saravanan Manickvasagam anchored their chase with a well-made run a ball 34 that included 2 huge sixes.
For his stellar bowling performance that tamed the Lions, Vamsidhar Varmakonda was adjudged the man of the match.
Good Vibes open their season with a win
Winning the toss under good batting conditions, Good Vibes began their season with a solid batting effort against their arch rivals Tricity. Though their batting mainstays Mahesh Raghunandan and Steven Mangal had forgettable outings, last year’s man of the T20 finals Kelvin Sawh came good once again in taking his team to a fighting total of 159 at the end of 30 overs. He scored a brilliant 61 that came almost run a ball and that included 2 sixes and 3 boundaries. For the Tricity, Ricardo, Mike Persaud, John Persaud, and Dereck Persaud shared the spoils as they picked up 2 wickets each.
Chasing 160 to win, Tricity folded in their 25th over for 134 runs. Sunil played a fighting knock coming in the middle order scoring 37 runs while Vickey and John Persaud gave a semblance of hope with their innings of 21 and 18 respectively. For the good Vibes, it was their senior statemen Anil Sahaman and John Florent who did the bulk of the damage picking 3 wickets a piece. For his brilliant rearguard effort of 61 fighting runs, Kelvin Sawh was adjudged the Man of the match.
Highlanders romp home to an easy win against Panthers
Winning the toss on a bright sunny day, Albany Highlanders had no hesitation to bat first. Their openers Shahzad Butt and Ashok Adikoppula put on a solid opening partnership of 117 runs that put the panthers at bay for the first 20 overs. Shahzad popularly known as Shak took his time to settle in on a up and down wicket. He offered straight bat for most of the deliveries in the first few overs while trying to gauge the wicket. As a result, the scoreboard moved very steadily. The first sign of intent came from Shak when his eyes lit up seeing a full-length ball in the slot that was waiting to be dispatched.
And dispatched he did in grand style sending the ball way over long on boundary. When the bowler Malla Reddy over corrected by bowling a half tracker the next ball, Shak was ready with this vicious pull that sent the ball over the midwicket region. All the while the other opener Ashok Adikoppula played a brilliant anchor role by rotating the strike and offering dead bat to most of the ball on the stumps.
The scorecard read 60 from the end of 10 overs. With the pitch settling in nicely Shak then played freely bringing his array of strokes and brought up his half century in style with his trademark pull. In all he hit 5 sixes and 4 boundaries in his match winning 82 that came off just 75 balls while Ashok scored a patient 27. With the highlanders playing with only 5 batsmen, couple of cheap wickets exposed their long tail sooner than they would have liked as they got all out for an above par 149 in 29 overs. For Panthers, Dinesh Bharadwaj picked up 5 wickets while cleaning up the tail with his stringent bowling.
Chasing 150 to win, Panther started off steadily with their openers Kiran Vishnu and Naren Polaki playing more cautiously. Kiran put away the bad balls and tried to play the long innings. The first breakthrough came when young Bilal Zadran brilliantly yorked Naren who had no clue to what was coming. Zarigul Zadran the young afghan pacer then took care of cleaning up the middle order with his vicious pace and bounce troubling the panther Batsman. Kiran all the while held the fort on the other hand in keeping the panther’s scoreboard ticking.
But he got out to a top spinner from Sudharsan Ramarao while trying to go over the covers but only edged the ball to the short third man. Ashok Adikoppula took the final 2 wickets as the Panthers folded for 108 in their 25th over. Kiran scored 27 while Anvesh provided a late boost to score with his big hits but that was still not enough. For his brilliant innings of 82 that set the game up for the Highlanders, Shahzad butt was adjudged the man of the match.
Knights of Albany beat the Good vibes convincingly
Winning the toss and batting first, the Knight of Albany were in serious trouble before a late order resurgence pulled them back in to the game. Good vibes opening bowlers John Florent and Mathew Persaud put the brakes on the Knights top order with some tight wicket to wicket bowling. Mathew who bowled his full quota in a single spell posed more troubles for the Knights by picking up both the openers and then trapping the Knights skipper LBW for a duck.
John then bowled Saravanan Manickvasagam, the new Knight batsman who had a dream year last year for the erstwhile Falcons, with a peach of a Yorker that would have even troubled the best of the batsmen.
Steven Mangal, the vibes skipper then priced out Jayaram Manukonda and Arun Ghanta leaving the Knights reeling at 63 for 6 at the end of 17th over. It is when Joseph Gali and Arun Gandhi joined hands and put on a fighting partnership that brought back Knights from the dead. Both ran very hard between the wickets and dismissed the bad balls to maximums.
Arun Gandhi made a 31 ball 28 that had 3 fours and 1 huge six while Joseph Gali made a fighting 47 from 50 balls that had 3 fours and 2 sixes. Ijaz Safi then gave the finishing touches with a 11 ball 17. Knights of Albany posted 164 from 30 overs. They scored 100 runs in the last 13 overs.
Chasing 165 to win, Good Vibes started off disastrously losing both their openers within the first 2 overs. Vamsidhar Varmakonda, coming off a 5-wicket haul in the previous game, bowled Mahesh through the gate while Arun Gandhi the other opening bowler had Steven Mangal playing on to his stumps. Emanuel seecharran then stayed put on the wicket while trying to play the long game. But Ijaz Safi the tearaway fast bowler of Knights bowled with vigor and demolished the vibes middle order with a 4-wicket haul.
John Florent played a short cameo of 22 from just 9 balls but the match was by then well in control of the Knights. Emanuel Seecharran made a fighting 33. For the Knights Vamsi continued his brilliant wicket taking form by picking 4 wickets while Ijaz Safi finished his quota of 6 overs for just 12 runs and 4 wickets. For his brilliant rearguard batting that brought the Knight back from the woods, Joseph Gali was adjudged the man of the match.
Tricity post their first win off the season
Winning the toss and opting to bat first the United warriors posted a decent 136 runs in 30 overs. Bharathwaj Samavedam coming in at 3 and Viraj Patel, their skipper, coming in at 4 put up a good partnership that took the warriors to a decent total. Bharat scored 31 from 42 balls while Viraj played a breezy knock of 36 from 40 balls. None of the other batsmen kicked on. For Tricity Alwin Mangra picked up 3 wickets while Mystic picked up 4 wickets.
Chasing 137 to win, Tricity was never in trouble as they reached home in their 26th over. Most of the batsman got starts and contributed to the score with Ahwass being the top scorer with 32 runs. Vickey scored 23 while their senior statemen Mike Persaud scored 28. Alwin Mangra gave the finishing touches to the chase. For his brilliant all-round effort Alwin Mangra was adjudged the Man of the match.
JET Albany post an easy win over Team DB-ES
Batting first on beautiful batting conditions, Team DB-ES was run over by the JET engine that steamrolled their opponents in no time. Team DB-ES never got going against tough bowling of the JETS as they got all out for a paltry 56 in their 25th over. All the JETS bowlers picked up wickets and inflicted damage on their opposition.
Chasing 57 to win, their opener Rahul Bandaru anchored the chase and finished off the game with an excellent 30 off just 27 balls. Jets romped home in just 11 overs. For his all-round effort with both bat and ball, Rahul Bandaru was adjudged the man of the match.