Peaking at the right time!

Victory a morale booster before the Pacific Cup final

 By Bobby Philips

      A beautiful day brought in an equally beautiful result for Team IECC. And the result came just a week before the all important Pacific Cup match. Engineers surely peaking at the right time!We delivered after an extended break away from the limelight. History can’t be changed but it begs us to ask questions and my crystal ball tells me… “We can continue our way of winning with holding on to the baggage of loss” Time to grow up friends and push for that extra mile and that is precisely we did. The game started for me a day before the actual match. My verbal duel with GS Dragons team manager was something that kept reverberating within my head.

     Needless to say, our team played the whole season with a relatively inexperienced side and an equally inexperienced captain. Our team made it to the ground as promised but the opponents was not to be seen. Toss was done around 10:15 and game slated to start off by 10:30. Unfortunately toss was lost and GS elected to bat. Playing without Jayesh Rana who called in sick the previous night, we fielded 10 on the said day. Yours truly donned the keeping glove and made plans to pursue with his experienced guys in the bowling category. New ball was handed over to Ajey. He continued with his impressive bowling performance from where he left off last year and got into the groove of things from word GO. Being miserly, he did his captain & team proud with his scintillating performance. Good job Ajey! The other end was guarded by Biju himself and he too got off in style.

     The Ajey – Biju pair was great and was persisted for 8 straight overs and two wickets till yours truly decided to hand over the baton to Anurag our new pace find! He along with Sanjeeb too got into the groove till we hit the drinks break of 17 overs. Anurag with his fiery pace and accuracy and Sanjeeb with his gentle mediums brought us obvious success as did the earlier combo did. Post drinks the cherry was handed over to Partha and Santosh. Partha bowled with good accuracy and a hint of swing but Santosh was not upto his mark in the field of slow bowling. Too many wides, combined with fours forced his captain to rethink the strategy a bit. By this period GS was loosing wickets too and your truly went for the kill by putting back his best bowlers into action and not running the risk of giving away any extra runs. Pick of the bowler was Anurag for his lethal accuracy. Good Job Anurag and looking forward of better outing with you in future. The statistic tells volumes of what our bowlers achieved on the field. GS Dragons was all out for 126 in 25 overs. Lunch was taken and the Engineers went in to bat around 1:15 PM. The opening pair of Bobby and Anil brought in some fun with yours truly trying to force runs from word go ultimately falling to a rash stroke as always. This was followed by Raj and Sanjeeb falling in quick succession – the middle order collapse when chasing relatively easy targets is what makes the Engineers  going – which brought in Anurag once again in the midst. After playing sensibly for sometime, Anurag too fell for a rush of blood stroke which brought in form batsman Santosh to the crease.

    Anil and Santosh played sensibly and build up a partnership which brings us to the question – is partnership essential to release pressure from our team mates. YES!!! We need to build on partnership from batsman number 1. Check out the Champion Trophy match between WI and Aus as an example. Fast scoring is good and thrilling but partnership and sensible cricket is the key to success. As the beautiful day passed by the in form duo accumulated runs at will and the extras too came in plenty to ultimately hand our team a great win before our next encounter with the J1C cup lifters for 2006 “Wombats”. Good luck team and I hope the positive attitude will prevail and great partnerships established on 11th November so that we can beat the much fancied opponents at Shizuoka.

Brief scores: T Dragons 125(25 ov). G Gardiner 72, A Singh 4/24 IECC 129/5(28.5 ov). Anil 28, S Ghadge 22.