Engineers struggle to make an eleven
By Sanjeeb Sahoo
It was a windy day at Edogawa and there was some doubt whether the ground will be in a condition to play. The surrounding area of the pitch was indeed wet and the Engineers has to justify their name by doing some innovative repairing work with the help of Myoden. By the time the writer reached the ground the match had already started. Fortunately the Engineers had won the toss and had decided to bat. Had we lost the toss it would have been difficult to set the fielding, with only 9 Engineers at the ground. Batting Make-shift openers Nissar and Jude set out to open the innings in the absence of the regulars. Vinod and Rahul opened the bowling for Myoden. Their precise line and the gutsy wind prevented us from cutting loose. Even dangerous looking Nissar, was having trouble hitting the ball out of the ground. Jude and Nissar did the sensible thing of trying to play according to the merit and kept rotating the strike. The first wicket fell at the 12th over, the score reading 58 at that time. Nissar played over an in swinging yorker from Vezly and got bowled.
The openers have once again provided a great lunch pad as we have seen is all the matches this season. Ajay was given a chance to bat up the order but was unlucky to get out of the first ball. It was a bad ball going down the leg and Ajey played the right shot of flicking it only to find the ball landing in the hands of the backward square leg. The catch that was taken by Sanman was superb. Ajey could not believe his bad luck considering that Sanman had dropped simpler catches earlier at least on two occasions. Bikash was next and batted for few overs before getting out LBW trying his favorite leg glance. How many times I have to tell the umpires that there is no LBW in a friendly matches. We try to be honest but dose the opposition return the favor? We should remove LBW from the friendly matches. Sanjeeb went in and started cautiously following his “10 balls first” rule. Jude on the other had seen enough balls and decided to become more aggressive and hit several good shots that reached the boundary. After being asked to step up the rate, he charged the bowler, Kedar, trying to put a flighted delivery into the river. Selfless display Jude! You will get your 50 next time.
Anurag walked in next. Sanjeeb and Anurag had a good partnership and the projected score was looking to cross 200 at that time. But Anurag got ran himself out trying to a take a quick second run. Biju joined. Sanjeeb started going for the big hits seeing that not many wickets left and hit some spectacular shots to impress his wife , who had kindly come to cheer him up. Biju also joined the action and hit some good shots , one of them being a cover drive that Sanjeeb is still trying to learn. After Biju was out Amol came in but was given LBW out by Nissar. He was bit unlucky as the bowler did not appeal at all. Sandeep came in started swinging the willow like Bhim and went back after playing and missing a few deliveries. Last man Shailesh came in and ran himself out backing up too far. By that time Sanjeeb had reached his 50. Engineers 164. Fielding Biju and Ajey started the bowling. They were bowling well and was able to generate bounce from the wicket which troubled both Myoden openers Sanman and Vezly. Sanman was hit on his shoulders and deliveries went past his nose, all by Biju.
A nervous looking Sanman was finally clean bowled by Ajey, going for a big drive, when the score was reading 27. Big hitting Vezly also got out cheaply trying to drive a super fast Nissar delivery; Bikash managed to hold on to a sharp catch behind the stumps. Myoden was in trouble , score reading 4/58. But Kedar(31) and Sagar(39) put up an 87 run partnership to bail them out and possibly put the game beyond the Engineers. Skipper changed bowlers, in vein, in the hope of breaking the partnership but nothing seemed to work. Kedar started like a Test batsmen but grew in confidence and played some brilliant strokes. Once the partnership was broken in 28th over by Nissar by clean bowling Kedar, Engineers sensed a chance and tried various things. Skipper brought himself back in, which produced immediate results when Rahul who had just arrived was clean bowled by a yorker. However, Sagar held one end and saw them through.This match has again underlined the Engineers poor bowling strength. Last minute drop out by two players didn’t help them either.
None of the bowlers were particularly impressive except the young Anurag. Engineers were missing their star bowler Ritesh’s absence at all the time. Bikash did a descent job behind the wicket trying to fill in for their missing keeper Bobby. Also lot of work need to be done in the fielding arena. Hopefully Practice manager Jude will look into these in near future. Nevertheless this was a great day of Cricket at the bank of Edogawa.
Brief scores: IECC 164 (33 ov). J Joseph 36, S Sahoo 51*, Vezley 4/28 Myoden 167/7 (32 ov). S Kamble 39