Category: 2008

Engineers dedicate their victory to the Mumbai terror victims

Engineers dedicate their victory to the Mumbai terror victims

Seasons ends with a BBQ

By Sanjeeb Sahoo

An inspirational email, that included a bait of post-match BBQ, from the president did serve well to gather an eleven for the match by Tuesday. However dropouts, as usual, on the day of the match ensured that the Engineers travelled to Shizuoka on a cold morning with only ten to field. But since most of the key players were available, the captain was hopeful to end the season on a high note. Masood rented an 8-seater for the Tozai-Yakuzas, from the place who gives him a discount , thinking Masood still works for Lehman :). Biju had kindly agreed to put his BMW to service, for the Saibu-Saints, must have gone through some difficulty to convince his life-partner :). The Engineers were supposed to play the match with black arm-bands to honour the victims of Mumbai terror victims but the president blamed a temporary lapse of memory for(not)getting it. At the ground the team observed a one minute silence before the match commenced.

It was a fantastic day to play cricket. Both captains agreed to play a 32 Overs game. Toss was taken around 10:45AM, and Engineers skipper called it right, and elected to bat first. In the absence of regular opener Santosh, Vijender was promoted to open with Vimal. Kytes a new bowler, Maywen, who started the bowling was able to generate good pace and bounce and occasionally swing too, from the pitch. But both openers did well to keep there wicket and played sensibly to post a score of 47 in 10 overs without loosing their wickets. Vijender was the first one to fall on the 13th over trying to accelerate the score. Bye that time though he had already proven himself as an solid opening batsman.

Ritesh, playing after long time given a chance to walk in next. He was initially tentative, then became aggressive and finally became over aggressive and fell to a good catch at log off. In-form batsman Raju walked in next and soon enough, the fire-works started. Both Vimal and Raju were playing the pacers quite easily, but were having some trouble against the flighted deliveries of Kytes captain Neil. Vimal fell next, clean bowled, trying to hit one of those deliveries out of the park. Captain Sanjeeb walked in next and joined Raju. Since 7 wickets were in hand and only 12overs were to go, both batsmen decided to put their feet on the Gas-pedal and, started accelerating towards 200. Both batsmen were quick between the wicket and were scoring boundaries almost at will. However Sanjeeb fell quickly trying to steal a non-existent single. Raju on the other hand kept going till the end and scored a marvelous 40 not-out, should have been a 50 if there were no scoring errors. One six, that he hit over the long-off was undoubtedly the best shot of the day. Biju, Bikash and Masood fell in quick succession and we were in the danger of getting all-out. However Deepak playing for the first time for the Engineers, showed immense potential and courage, and hit some glorious boundaries in the process, and we managed to post an imposing total of 207/8.

208 is a safe score, especially when some of the Kytes’ regulars and big hitters were absent. So Captain decided to satisfy the bowling ambitions of some of the devoted players and decided to bring in his key bowlers later in the innings. So Masood was trusted with the new ball along with Rajeesh. Rajeesh’s pace was too much for the Kyte’s opners and on his 2nd over he dislodged Kytes captain Neil’s leg stump. Masood on the other end was surprisingly bowling with great accuracy and with some swing. It may be interesting to note that there was an agreement between the Captain and Masood that if he gave more than 11 runs in 2 overs he will be taken out of the bowling. But safely, Masood’s first 2 overs went only for 4 runs and was rewarded for his accuracy eventually taking the wicket of the other Kytes opener, Bikash doing well to hold on to the catch at short-leg.

Rajeesh removed the next batsman, Deepak held on to a Sharp catch behind the stumps. Sanjeeb(fielder)-Rajeesh(bowler) managed to remove the next batsman Lalith, thanks to a brilliant fielding at cover. The batsman later blamed on the Indian greed for running an old man out and not giving him a second chance. Captain then decided to do a double bowling change after the 10th over and bring in his main bowlers Biju from one end, and emerging spin bowler Bikash from the other. Biju showing no sign of his previous ankle injury bowled with lot of aggression and removed two of the Kytes batsmen in quick time, one of which was with a beautiful inswinging yorker. It could easily have been 3 had Rajeesh held on to the chance that came his way. Bikash on the other-end was trying to perfect his flighted deliveries, and the traditional rivalry between him and Nick started to unfold. In the end both had their times, Nick hitting Bikash for a six and later Bikash manging to take his revenge after few balls, Masood taking a well judged catch at mid-wicket, strategically placed there for that specific shot.

The next batsmen went into a defensive mode and were in no mood to take any risk and the daylight began fade out. Sensing the danger of a bad light and smelling the flavor of already cooking barbeque :), Captain decided to finish the match quickly and brought in slow bowlers Vimal and captain himself and they removed the next 3 batsmen almost in no time and Kytes were all out for 113 in 23 overs.

The traditional season-ending Barbeque was fantastic, and we enjoyed it a lot along with our hosts. We thanked our hosts in the end, and head back home. Bikash’s “Kaun-Banega-RoadPati” game did help to keep the Yakuzas calm during the 35KM-long week-end traffic jam.

Brief scores: IECC 207/7. S Raju 40, N Harrison 3/40. Kytes 110 (22.5 overs).

Nagoya dashes Engineers’ PFC hopes

Poor bowling, poor batting, poor fielding… anything else?

By Sanjeeb Sahoo

It was after a long time the Engineers got to the field for some real cricket (40 overs). At this time of the year it is normally a struggle to find an 11, but the team selectors were very happy to see 13 players available for this match. Best (available!) 11 was picked.

Biju and Santosh , two of our most experienced guides, were given the contract to drive the Yakuzas and the Saints in separate vehicles, and were instructed to avoid unnecessary fighting and chanting on the way, in order to reach the ground by 10AM. Engineers won the toss and elected to field first with Biju and Vimal sharing the new ball. Vimal, who have changed his bowling style lately, to make up for the lack of a spin bowler in the team, bowled fantastically and troubled both batsmen with his leg spin. He provided early breakthrough for us in his first over trapping Nagoya captain Saqib plumb in front.

Biju has bowled well throughout this year with the new ball , but this time he was having some trouble controlling the line and length, Heavy food on the previous night may need to be blamed here :). Some may call it a chance, but most of us think that Biju did well to get out of the way of a fierce uppish straight drive from Nagoya opener Madan at the last possible moment, that would have cut him into two halves 🙂

Vimal kept bowling beautifully at the other end and the batsmen were having trouble scoring. The pressure got to one of the batsman and he tried to take a quick single to arguably the best fielder(!!) in the team, 🙂 yours truly, who picked the ball at short-leg, diving to his left, and rocketed it toward the running end. Direct hit saw the 1st down batsman walking toward the river in disbelief. Engineers were on top at that stage.

However the other Nagoya opener Madan and the 2nd down batsman Raza batted steadily and easily managed to clear the boundary at will. When Raza retired due to a back injury, the score was around 160 in the 25th over. But then it started raining in sixes and had we kept our car near the river , we would have needed some kind of umbrella to protect them. Vimal had finished his quota and Sanjeeb had just one over left, all other bowlers had no clue how to react to the situation when the batsmen were trying to hit every ball for a six. Some dropped chances also contributed in the process of Nagoya reaching 264, even though in the 35th over we gave away only 2 runs. Madan top scored from Nagaoya side with a fine 96. A superb throw from fine leg by Vijender saw him walking 4 short of what would have been a fantastic century.

We had a solid batting line up but chasing 264 was a tough ask, the pressure got to most of our top and middle order batsmen. And at one point it seemed like we will get all-out by 25th over for about 120 runs. But the 83 runs unbroken 9th wicket partnership between Raju and Bikash saw us reaching a respectable total of 195. It was a treat to watch Raju bat like that. Unlike other matches where he normally gets a start and then gives away his wicket easily, in this match he made the most of the start. He kept his cool as the wickets kept falling around him, and mixed caution with aggression intelligently, to reach a carrier best personal score of 60 not out. All 3 sixes he hit were very clean and looked effortless. Engineers really had something to cheer about when he scored 23 runs from one of the Nagoya boy’s overs.

Bikash who has a habit of being part of record breaking partnerships, also did well to keep his wicket and remained not out on 13.

Now, Nagoya will meet the Tokyo Giants in the title match.

High lights of the match Vimal established himself as a fine leg spinner. Raju established himself as a very good hard hitting batsman. We can bat out the overs without getting all out.

Low lights of the match Our batting has improved a lot this year, however our bowling still remains a concern. Future practice sessions should put more stress on some bowling Strategy and training the bowlers what to do in tough situations.

Brief scores: Nagoya 263/6. Madan 96, Raza 56. IECC 195/8. S Raju 60.

Engineers and YC&AC start a new era of friendship

Engineers and YC&AC start a new era of friendship

     Begin an annual one-match series By Sanjeeb Sahoo This marked the beginning of a new yearly one-match series with YC&AC and adds to YC&AC’s existing other annual series with KRAC, Kobe and the Sri Lankan Lions. For the Engineers, this adds to their existing friendship series called Pacific Friendship Cup with the Shizuoka Kytes, which has now expanded to include 6 other teams on a rotation basis. As usual, there is always trouble getting a decent eleven but Sanjeeb finally managed to get an eleven on Friday evening after some frantic phone calls. It was overloaded with batsmen and lacked a few bowling options. The weather was looking doubtful, though it was not raining in the morning of Sunday.

     YC&AC won the toss and elected to bat first. Captain and Vice captain thought it will be good to start the bowling with spin due to the nature of the wicket. Vimal started the bowling and it was obvious from the first over that the strategy is working. Dinesh from the other end was bowling with pace and variation. With the field set to perfection, runs were hard to come by and the pressure started taking a toll on the batsmen. Vimal had his first victim getting the batsman to push at one of his carrom balls. “Sharp Catch” , thought the captain, as soon as Satosh managed to save his face at slip 🙂 Next one was a beauty. Dangerous Avinash danced down the track to smack Vimal into the swimming pool, only to find the ball spin at 15 degrees, Rasib behind the stump was quick enough and even before Avinash realized that he was outside, the bails were removed.

     Next came in skipper Kamran and started hitting some splendid drives and square cuts and was threatening to take the game away from us. But Sanjeeb cut his stay short by devising a strategy that was executed to perfection. Santosh again took a good catch at slip. Don’t recall seeing so many catches taken at slip in recent years. At this stage the Engineers were on top, but next batsman Prashant Kale had other plans in mind. Missing chances also did not help our cause. We gave him at least five lives and he survived till the end scoring a splendid century and taking the score to 268 in 40 overs.

    Madhu can be considering most unlucky bowler here, most of the catches that came off his bowling were dropped. Though the score was looking daunting, we had still hopes of winning given that we had a strong batting side with former national player Sriram back in the team. But as soon as we finished the lunch break it started pouring down. Strategic decision was taken to push Vimal and Sriram down the order hopping the weather might improve latter, though it never did.

    Santosh and Masood started the proceedings. However Massod edged a beautiful out-swinger from Kamran and had to leave immediately. Dinesh, pushed up the order replaced him and started steadily. It was Santosh who decided to take the heat to the opposition. His Sehwag style lofted straight drives were a treat to watch and Kamran was on the receiving end of it. Runs were flowing freely at that stage, when rain started coming down really heavy and umpires decided to stop the play till it slows down a bit. We resumed after 15 minutes, but the break caused some loss in concentration and we lost 3 quick wickets . Dinesh, Santosh and Nitin got out in the span of 2 overs and balance shifted towards YC&AC. Vimal and Sanjeed started cautiously , too cautiously that the runs only came in odd singles which helped mount run rate steadily. Sanjeeb got out eventually failing to read an off cutter from the bowler. Sriram walked in and the difference between form and class was visible immediately.

     As the old saying goes “form is temporary, while class is permanent.” Sriram playing after almost a year, showed no sign of nerve or loss of form, and started timing the ball beautifully. Seeing this, Vimal on the other end grew in confidence and also started taking few risks. The runs started flowing freely again. But the rain kept pouring, visibility kept worsening and the outfield kept slowing down. More than 100 run partnership between Vimal and Sriram saw us cruising towards the respectable 200 runs mark. About 70 runs were required in last 8 overs. At this stage ground was completely wet and the pitch was like a small swimming pool. Ball was not rising at all. We could have stopped the play if we wanted, but we kept playing just for the spirit of the game.

     The conditions eventually denied us the win as we lost quick wickets, more due to the conditions than the bowling attack. Finally we managed 222/10 in 37 overs which under the circumstances can be considered a great score. Even the opposition appreciated the effort. Considering the weather and the way we managed to finish the game, I think it is fare to say that the spirit of cricket was the winner on that day. The game was played in a very friendly atmosphere and there were no conflicts to be noted. We attended the dinner and prize giving ceremony and thanked YC&AC for organizing the event and the beginning of a new era of friendship.

Vimal was adjudged man of the match from our side and Prashat Kale from YC&AC side. Both received a champagne bottle each.

Paddy Foley’s new recruits let Engineers make merry

Paddy Foley’s new recruits let Engineers make merry

..but not without the familiar middle order collapse

By Vimal Vikrant

A hot and humid summer day, peak of summer and time for cricket! The opposition was the beer guys, Paddy Foleys:). The schedule mail said that match was at 9.30 and so I got there at 9 to see a lone new Engineer, Vijay, and nobody else. The opposition came in as a bunch at around 9:20. But our team is a firm believer in IST standing for Indian Stretchable time:) It was almost 10 by the time all of us were there. Anyway, game got underway at 10 after captain Sanjeeb won the toss elected to bat. Self and Santosh walked in to face the music. The start was very up and down with the bowlers throwing in some pies and some jaffas. Most of the scoring was through the copious amounts of wides and noballs that our dear opponents gave us. But they probably had a sly plan of making the batsmen lose concentration by doing that, and then throwing in some on-target rockets. One of those that landed on good length shook my castle and I took the long walk back. Sanjeeb and Amol also walked in and out though Amol scored a few. But a few careless shots sank the Engineers temporarily and for a while it looked like they won’t go beyond 150 but Santosh was solid on one side, keeping the scoreboard ticking with the occasional big hit. He found some support in Jagan with whom a 100+ runs partnership was built. They kept the scorer busy with brisk strokes. Santosh eventually fell, more to fatigue than good bowling and missed the century by 8 runs. The new look lower order Amit, Sandeep, Vijay and old hand Jagan etc contributed some quick runs and we ended up at 264/9.

The Paddy Foley’s innings started slow with Biju getting some early breakthroughs but Jagan was generous in giving away extras with a few jaffas as a side dish. In a slight change of strategy, yours truly has started bowling spin this year and this was a time that it came off, thanks in no small measure to the opposition batsmen who kept blocking my tossed up deliveries. Amol and me bowled a bit during the middle overs and the scoring rate came down and the asking rate went up. Paddy’s Anil threatened to do some damage along with Andy, who kept blocking even the bad deliveries. Skipper brought back Biju for a second spell to control Anil but that moved seemed to fail until the 5th ball of his come back over when he had Anil caught at long off, Santosh taking a good running catch. 4 balls in that over cost 14 runs but the wicket was worth it. The match was effectively over once Anil got out but Paddy’s Suleiman, as an umpire, kept hopes as he kept checking where the boundary lines are marked and the exact point where the ball stopped. With more than 100 runs to score with only 3 wickets and 10+ overs left, a bemused Andy remarked to Suleiman, “if we lose the game by four runs, let us worry about the boundary line”.

New man Vijay said he was a keeper-batsman, but bowled beautifully when given the chance. Most in the team got a chance to bowl and almost nobody disappointed. New man Amit Sharma matched up with some of the opposition bowlers and gave away 28 runs off 2 overs by way of elephantine wides but, hey, hang on…, he came home with 3 wickets!

Lot of good laughter on the filed made the game very interesting for both the teams and the spirit was excellent.

Brief scores: IECC 264/9. S Ghadge 92 P Foleys 162. A Sharma 3/28.

Dragons tail knocks Engineers out

Dragons last pair secures an unlikely victory

 By Javed Jamadar

      Number of overs to be played is always a bone of contention when we play the Dragons. The Dragons are not great fans of 40 over cricket and they would rather like a quick 20-25 overs and go home where as the Engineers do not want anything less than 35. This time, however, the Dragons agreed to play a 35 overs. The match, by itself, had some uncertainties as to who were going to play and in the end it was Dragons who came up with a team. But the Engineers were still one player short. Skipper Sanjeeb won the toss and promptly elected to bat first in pretty hot and humid weather so that the church-attending Biju can join in time for fielding. Engineers openers Masood and Santosh started with a bit of cautious approach. As both of them were looking forward to build a good partnership, a short boundary on the leg side lured Santosh to go for a shot, which he mistimed straight to point fielder. Masood also felt shortly after playing short steady knock of 11.

     The pair of inform Raju and Rasib steadied the innings thereafter. With some solid hitting Rasib accelerated the run rate a bit. In the middle order Javed added quick fire 19 runs to further accelerate the scoring rate. On one end Rakesh kept the scorecard ticking with excellent running between the wickets. Though at point the Engineers were looking set for 170 plus, wickets kept falling at regular intervals and the Engineers were bowled all out for 146 in 33 overs. Biju and Sanjeeb lead the Engineers attack in well controlled manner. Dragons were troubled in all corners by Biju’s superb accuracy in line and length and well directed bouncers. On the other end Sanjeeb was bang on target. Biju accuracy immediately gave a break-through for the Engineers when opener Ivan was caught behind in the third over. Biju and Sanjeeb didn’t gave any chance for the openers to settle in and soon the dragons openers were back. This superb tight spell restricted dragons to 19/2 after 10 overs. As the key bowlers were rested for this match it was left to part timers to defend the total. Part timers did show their might by taking regular wickets but scoring became bit easy and dragons middle order lead by Gardiner was looking set for a comfortable win. To break the set pair Sanjeeb brought in Javed, this move paid well as Javed gave a breakthrough with first ball he bowled with a prized wicket of well set Gardiner.

     This breakthrough followed by wickets from Rakesh while Bikash kept the encounter on for fighting finish. Some fine fielding and solid wicket keeping by Rasib made it difficult to score runs even though part times were bowling. Biju again struck in his second spell and all the time kept the pressure on Dragons batsman. Biju and Sanjeeb were as accurate as in their first spell. But after both of them bowled out their overs it was left to Part timers again to pull off the win. They almost succeeded in that lead by some fine bowling by Raju. With Dragons 130/9 the Engineers smelt victory but there were no bowlers left. As Javed bowled a few wides in his over, the opposition team kept encouraging him to bowl more. Every wide was cheered and chants of J-a-v-e-d rent the ground. Last pair Naveen and Murali went through some nervous moments of hit and miss but managed to guard their wickets. As Murali hit the winning runs of Javed, the Dragons ran into the ground, which, for a moment, the Engineers thought was to congratulate the last pair of holding their nerve and securing an unlikely victory. But to their surprise, the Dragons ran towards the non-striker’s end, hugged the bowler and lifted him up in the air for his help :-).

 Brief scores: IECC 146 (33.2 ov) T Dragons 147/9(32 ov). G Gardiner 30, B Paul 3/15.

Friends grounded

Make-shift Engineers show their might

 By Sandeep Thakker

      What began as a cloudy Sunday morning at Edogawa, eased out into a good day and culminated in an interesting finish with a six of the last ball. The match was conceived only 2 days earlier and Engineers had a tough time putting up a decent team. In the end captain and president’s hard work bore fruit and an eleven were gobbled together on Saturday less than 24 hours before the match. Early morning drizzles caused the Friends captain to call off the match but a determined Engineers skipper was able to persuade the Friends to the ground. With 35 overs a side and the match starting at 12 noon, it was expected to be a tough fight but not without its ups and downs. Cleverly working out a winning strategy, the Engineers captain Sanjeeb Sahoo decided to bowl first against one of the strongest teams in Japan and KCL finalists for the last two years running.

     Having unknown entities in the side did not deter the skipper to take that courageous decision. Biju and Sangan opened the bowling for the Engineers against Friends’ usual opening pair of Asad and Saad. The script somehow did not have an auspicious beginning with the new comer Javed at long-off floored a skier in the 5th over off Saad, with Biju being the victim, robbing the Engineers of an early break-through. Engineers were quick to realise that there were more people with grease in their hands on the field as more than half-a-dozen catches went begging especially huge hits around the long off region. In spite of those initial hiccups, with fiery pace that Anurag generated Friends batsmen found it hard to handle the bowling. Soon the wheels started rolling and wickets began to tumble. With Ritesh on the other end not giving anything away the two pacers along with Biju gave the opposition much to think about and by the half way half way mark(17 overs), half of the batsmen were back in the hut with the score reading 79/5. But there was one more batsman the Engineers would have liked to see the back of earlier. Aamir Ali. The beneficiary of most of the dropped catches.

     Just when the Friends thought they had their feet in, came a good throw from point to the ‘keeper and with both the batsman stranded in the middle of the pitch the stumps were rattled resulting in a run out. But strangely enough, the decision went to the batsman’s favor, as the square leg umpire wasn’t convinced that the bails were taken off with the ball in hand. The exasperated Engineers continued without much fuss for the sake of the friendly game and maintained the discipline. It was as if one was inspiring the other and the good work done by Anurag and Ritesh were continued by Partha and Sanjeeb.

     On the whole the bowling appeared good, barring one over that went beyond double digits owing to a couple of high catches being dropped, butter fingers is what they say :-). Aamir, the captain coming lower down saved the day for Friends with some lusty hitting to finish with 69 and was the last man dismissed. Friends thus folded up at 173 well within 34 overs owing to some decent bowling performance by the Engineers, with Anurag being the chief destructor(4/17). The script could not have been better for the Engineers with Friends being quite contrast to the Engineers’ beginning in terms of discipline in bowling department. With at least a few wides in each over the task became easier for the Engineers and with a fluent 79 run opening partnership there was little to worry for the Engineers. After the fall of the first wicket Friends sniffed a chance and would have thought they would be able to cave their way back in whereas what happened was a total contrast.

    A hurricane by the name of Javed Jamadar came their way and they were swept off their feet with some lusty hitting. Its what pinch hitters are supposed to do, but none expected that boundaries would be cleared with such ease by this surprise package and last minute fill-in. Two of his hits landed in the river, prompting even the bowler to applaud. In fact even the Engineers did not expect this storm to hit the ground :). Though the Friends managed to get a couple of wickets but by the time they came it was too late for the Friends. In the end, an unfinished partnership of 49 between Raju and Sandeep saw Engineers home with Raju hitting a the winning runs by a six.

Brief scores: Friends: 173 (33.4ov.). Aamir Ali 69, A Singh 4/17 IECC: 174/4 . S Ghadge 39*, S Raju 30*.

Tigers blown away by the Engineers with a fantastic display of all round cricket

Newbies show their potential

By Sanjeeb Sahoo

      There were a lot of doubt on Friday and Saturday if this match can be played considering the weather forecast. Though we had both Shizouka and Edogawa grounds available , weather forecast was not looking good at either of the places but in the end we decided to stick to Tokyo. Light drizzle posed a threat of cancellation but the captains decided to take the chance at the weather and decided to get to the ground, one eager to play its only second match since inception and the other salivating the prospect of easy four points against their compatriot rivals. But the presence of Japanese women’s team at the ground caused some confusion about who the ground was given to but soon sorted out with ladies agreeing to leave although the Engineers were tempted to take the help of the ladies to fill the no. 10 and 11 spot. You guessed it right, we had only 9 for the match, thanks to last minute drop outs with and without intimation. As heavy rain was predicted late in the afternoon, 35 overs-per-side match was decided. Engineers skipper called the coin right and elected to bat first given the inexperience of the newbies. Skipper spent his first 30 minutes on the phone making frantic calls to have 11 on the field while some weak hearted ones engaged in the conversation with the fairer sex.

    Skipper at last hit the jackpot when he convinced Ashish join an hour later. Vimal and Masood opened the innings but Vimal didn’t last long as he nicked one to the slip trying to drive the ball that pitched almost on the edge of the pitch. Amol then walked in to give company to Masood who was batting well and looking solid after hitting a huge six over square leg. Seemed like he was in an aggressive mood. Amol playing his first match of the season, nicked a slower ball to the keeper and had to walk back quickly. As the score reading 2/35 skipper promoted Raju to no 3 for this game and he made his aggressive intent clear from the beginning. But a poor calling between Raju and Masood resulted in the latter running himself out. Score reading 3/41 at the 10th over, captain walked in with the intent to stabilize things a bit. Raju and yours truly batted and used caution and aggression intermittently and bailed the Engineers out of a tight spot. By the time Raju got out the score was reading 4/102 on the 21st over. Raju sent the Tigers on a leather hunt and one of the best was a straight six over long on that almost landed in the river.

     After Raju got out, Dinesh and Anurag gave company to the skipper and they managed to add another 50 runs. Jagan walked in the score reading 6/151 and opened his account hitting a lovely square cut for 4. Just 2 overs were left and Jagan fell victim to a poor calling , sacrificing his wicket for his skipper. Biju was next, and the field being well spread they decided to nudge the ball around and run as fast as they can. In the last over 10 runs were scored just by running and by the end both Biju and Sanjeeb were gasping for breath. Final score was 7/194 with Sanjeeb remaining not out on 59 hitting 5 fours and a six in the process. After a quick 15 minutes lunch break Engineers borrowed some caps from the tigers to keep there head out of the rain and took to the field. Biju started the proceedings with the new ball. A 5/3 field was set considering that we had only 10 on the field. Biju on his 2nd over got the ball to bounce from the good length and Abraham the opener could only fend it awkwardly to Dinesh at the slip after it brushed the gloves of the batsman. Biju provided another break through again by claiming the Tigers no. 3 and vice captain and Engineer’s former mate Anil. I remember some one saying something which meant that the “after the pressure of captainship is gone, the bounce in the bowling is back”. All the bowlers bowled a tight line.

     Anurag was almost unplayable for the 6 overs he bowled. We took wickets at regular intervals and always kept the Tigers under pressure. In the end Jagan came in and took 2 wickets in just 3 balls and wrapped on Tiger’s innings on the 20.3 overs for 66. He was on a hat trick but unfortunately no wickets were left to be taken. The win came just before the heavy shower. Both the Engineers and Tigers deserve a pat on there back  for the spirit with which they played and made the match possible on a rainy day. Here are few highlights from the match. – Masood maturing as an opener. A thumping Six over square leg showed that he can be aggressive if he chooses to. – Raju played a crucial role as a pinch hitter.

   A huge Six over long on that almost landed in the river proves his ability. – Partnership between Raju and Sanjeeb was the pillar of the IECC innings. – We managed to play out all 35 overs without getting all out. – Biju again leading the attack with the bowling and provided the crucial early breakthroughs. – Anurag bowling with great pace and accuracy with the slippery ball and destroyed the Tiger’s. Sanjeeb provided the support from the other end. – Jagan taking 2 wickets in just 3 balls he bowled and on a hat-trick when he bowls in the next game. Certainly the long absence from the game has not dampened his pace and swing. – Vimal doing a great job behind the stump in absence of our regular keepers. – Our fielding was good. Dinesh’s catch at the slip, high catches by Masood and diving effort by Amol at the point were some of the highlights of our effort in the field. – Special thanks to Ashish who joined us on a very short notice, did not get to bat , fielded in the rain and saved around 10/15 valuable runs for us. Should go a long way to remind everyone that, a team is made from individuals but how successful and long lasting the team is depends on the sacrifices we are willing to make.

Brief scores: IECC: 194/7 (35 ov.). S Sahoo 59* Indian Tigers: 66 (20.3 ov). A Sing 3/15

Engineers record their first win panting and puffing

Kytes fly on Arbab 50

By Biju Paul

A new season couldn’t have started better for the Engineers. After back-to-back washouts of the practice matches, Engineers set out for their first serious match with only a couple of net sessions behind them but those sessions  turned out to be good enough to beat the Kytes, though the Engineers new captain would have liked a much better performance from his batsmen. The coin was tossed on time – thanks to the Kytes who had laid out the pitch before the Engineers arrived – Kytes skipper called it right and gave the Engineers what they wanted – fielding, much to the disappointment of the most vociferous (and noisy) advocate of batting first, Ritesh Kakkar. Joel and Todd opened the innings for the Kytes facing Anurag and this writer. The Kytes did not seem to be interested in scoring any runs as a vast majority of their runs came from extras. After 6 overs the Kytes scoreboard looked 1/14 with yours truly surprising himself with a bowling analysis at one stage having 3.4-2-1-1. Joel Chamberlain was the batsman out in the 4th over of the match, clean bowled after surviving a very close LBW shout in the previous delivery. Arbab replaced Joel and started jittery but settled down quickly with singles. No threats from Kytes so far as they progressed at a Test match run rate. After Dinesh had opener Todd caught at cover off an intelligently bowled slower one, his replacement Sharpe did not last long as he was caught at cover by Anurag off Ritesh, a decision that left the batsman fuming, as he thought it was a bump ball. Larry came, consumed 17 balls to for a score of 6 and the fall of Larry brought Abbot. But he didn’t last either and fell to Anurag for 5 and the batsmen left screaming and cursing as if a well set batsman getting out to a careless shot. That brought skipper Neil with his bat thicker than Sharpe’s thigh muscle and scored runs at a good pace. Arbab, meanwhile, at the other end continued to play his shots, with the Engineers skipper Sanjeeb bearing the brunt of his attack. Sanjeeb went for 22 runs in his first over, all by Arbab and the batsman completed  his 50 in that process. Sanjeeb, however, had the last laugh, having him caught at long on by Bobby – an excellent running catch that was but not before flooring a similar one in the previous over. That brought the last man, Robert-Gills Martineau for company for Neil. Sanjeeb then brought your reporter to cleanup the Kytes tail, which prompted the umpire Anton McCloy to take out his pocket calculator to calculate the combined age of the two batsmen, bowler and the umpire himself. A combined experience of 200 years on the field at the same time! Oh, KCL you are the winner! When Sanjeeb had RGM LBW, the Kyes had scored 138, thanks to Arabab and Wides(38). In the beginning, a target of 139 looked easy as long as the usual crumble didn’t happen and it didn’t to a certain extend. Opener Masood had held fort at one end with a solid 21 off 55 balls when wickets went cheaply at the other end. The Engineers did have a scare with the score at 6/91 when Bobby fell for a 17 ball 10, after a partnership of 21 with the come back boy Dinesh Singh. Ritesh joined Dinesh and the duo then set about scoring without resorting to any rash shots and put up a 39 runs partnership to sail the Engineers safe. Dinesh fell for a stroke filled 23(2×4, 1×6) when 10 runs required for the victory, which the next batsman Anurag and Ritesh completed in the 34th over, dashing the Kytes hope of a victory against the Engineers for which they had brought back the last successful captain against the Engineers, who had abdicated his duty two years ago. Over all, the game was good, it was nice to see the old man on the field with a dead bat, ordering a mortuary like silence on the filed when he faced the bowler, walking away when the sound of the bowler’s foot steps distracted his intense focus. Thank you Kytes for the good lunch!

Brief scores: S Kytes 138(35.3 ov) A Mohammed 57, S Sahoo 3/31 IECC 139/7(33.5 ov). D Singh 23, S Navod 4/37.