Bout-du-Monde, 12 June 2016, Premier League
Geneva Cricket Club, 246 all out for 8 in 36.4 overs (Idrees 62, Ronak 59, Ankit 52, Jibran 3-43), beat Geneva International Cricket Club, 141 all out in 30.2 overs (Anser 4-38), by 105 runs
With menacing skies and drizzles here and there, conditions were far from ideal for a wonderful cricketing day. Both teams nonetheless showed obstinacy and were not ready to give up an awesome 40-over match. With Geneva CC winning the toss (again!?!), skipper Anser decided to bat. Geneva’s favorite opening pair came on the pitch and accomplished their duty royally. Facing strikesman Ankit started the game with a piercing six towards third man. Idress – who came back from injury after breaking his thumb last month as he bowled-and-caught the opponent – got lucky and was dropped twice at point (6.3 overs) and slip (10.4 overs). Sloppy fielding ultimately allowed the man to reach another half-century with Ankit at his side… just as usual. Opening bowlers Jibran and Habib had difficulties to contain runs despite displaying some decent bowling skills.
The beautiful partnership of 105 was broken in the third ball of the twelth over when Habib excelled for a wicket maiden, having Ankit caught behind by keeper Hemant. While Idrees started to score boundaries after boundaries, Thomas tricked newcomer Saqib for a catch at mid-off. Idrees followed suit in the next over when he slightly edged a very wide ball on the off side towards slip. Starting from this point, Geneva CC started to lose their wickets every 3-4 overs. Anser hit an absolutely mind-blowing six towards fine leg in the 22nd over but was dismissed in the next spell, bringing in Ronak at the very end of the middle order. 161 for 6 in 22 overs. The demise of Geneva CC’s strong batsmen continued in the 27th over when Jibran executed an amazing spell by taking two wickets for naught. The double wicket maiden left GCC sweating with pressure with 176 for 7 in 27 overs. It then only took 8 balls to send another batsmen to the bench: Ahmad’s nicked towards Thomas at slip who let the ball slide…but was ultimately recovered in a great team effort by Vivian at second slip.
The deplorable batting from Geneva CC’s middle and low order did not deter Ronak from respecting his wicket and keeping up with the run rate. Ronak accelerated and built up a decent partnership with crazy-running Afif and classy Parit. After successfully hitting the pink ball hard – he hit 4 fours and 4 sixes –, Ronak was finally bowled out by Dilbar for a ball crashing straight on the middle stump. The Man of the Match helped the team reaching a very decent score of 246 runs in 36.4 overs.
After a break blessed by showers, the opening bowling pair of Afif and Ankit started very strong. Afif commenced with a maiden while Ankit’s swinging balls made it difficult for Amar and Khartik to judge the trajectory well. Idress stepped in straight away with a wicket on the first ball, giving a good catch to Saad at midwicket. Anser took a second wicket in the tenth over, leg before wicket style. 29 runs for 2 after 10 overs. Geneva’s captain did it again in his next sequence to offer superb catch to Afif who moved quickly at deep square leg.
The catch of the day took place a moment later in the 15th over when Habib blasted really hard towards fine leg. Parit caught the super fast ball one-handed while jumping in the air. Outstanding. In the last ball of that same over, Sanket brought back the attention to him as he slapped the ball very very far beyond long off for the most powerful shot of the day. 59 for 4 in 15 overs.
With the run rate fluctuating between 4 and 5, and wickets continuing to fall every 3-2 overs, GICC was not able to chase the score as they wanted to. With Hemant and Thomas dismissed in the 21st and 23rd over, the die was cast. It was only a matter of time before GICC would end up all out. At 30.2 overs, Vivian was the last man standing when he was easily caught by Saad (total of 4 catches for the man) after an inswinging treacherous ball by Saqib. Another victory for Geneva CC in Cricket Switzerland the Premier League, which brings the team closer to a quarter-finals qualification spot.