Last Sunday (Mar 26) saw the 8th round of the C&C Marine 2017 T20 tournament at the Alan Cooke Ground (ACG) with Phuket Cricket Group (PCG) taking on the Island Cricket Club (ICC).

Waseem brings up 50 with a 6; one of nine in a total of 75 runs, not out. Photo: Michael Way

PCG went into the game hoping to regain ground on league leaders Patong Cricket Club, while ICC were hoping to secure their first min of the season and finally get some points on the board.

PCG skipper I Mushtaq won the toss and elected that he and his team would bat first.

Mushtaq opened for PCG together with M Sadarangani and they were looking to start strongly against a struggling ICC.

The openers managed to take the score to 33 when Mushtaq (17) departed after being caught by Virdikar off the bowling of Borkar. Next in was K Sadarangani (6), however, he unfortunately retired hurt in the over just after the drinks break which brought to the crease W Manzoor.

Manzoor and Sadarangani took the score to 84 when Sadarangani (29) was clean bowled by Kalakar. New batsman S Bowry (0) followed Sadarangani back to the pavilion just a few balls later after being trapped LBW by Virdikar.

With the score on 87 runs for 3, and in the 13th over, the time had come to push for a big score. Manzoor decided it was time to attack, and together with Rehman punished anything and everything. Both batsmen took PCG to the 19th over when Rehman (24) was run out by Naik looking for an extra run.

Meanwhile, at the other end, Manzoor had moved into the 70s and was joined by M Platts (0) with just a few balls left in the innings. Both batsman guided PCG through the 20th over, setting ICC a score of 173 runs to win.

Manzoor’s traffic innings of 75 runs came off just 34 deliveries which included two 4s and an incredible nine 6s!

ICC opened with S Ullah and S kandolkar. Both batsmen started positively with a challenging total to chase against a good bowling attack.

The openers took the score to 31, when in the 4th over Kandolkar (16) was clean bowled by Mirza. R Naik came to the crease and continued the positive batting, taking ICC to the 10 over drinks break, pushing the score into the 70’s without further wickets being lost.

With plenty of wickets in hand and batsmen full of confidence, ICC kept the run rate well ahead of what was needed. That was until the 15th over, when opener Naik (34) was dismissed caught by Sadarangani off Mushtaq’s bowling. Opener Ullah (40), who had batted for 60 minutes, was dismissed just two balls later again caught by Sadarangani again off the bowling of Mushtaq.

The loss of these two quick wickets seemed to slow the ICC momentum. They appeared to be heading for their first win of the competition, when with just a few overs left, S Bowry was given the ball and in an inspired spell claimed three wickets in the 19th over.

B Dessai (3) was cleaned bowled, S Kumar (19) stumped Manzoor, and A Kalakar was caught and bowled.

The flurry of late wickets effectively ended ICC’s chance of victory, falling just 15 runs short of their target and they remain winless.

This coming Sunday (Apr 2) April sees a short break in the C&C Marine T20 League due to ground maintenance issues, however, the league will recommence 30 April.

For further information about cricket on Phuket, visit the Phuket Cricket Group (PCG) web-site at www.phuketcricket.com or e-mail the PCG committee at phuketcricketgroup@gmail.com. New players are always welcome & would be well received by the current teams on the island. 

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