The smell of spring is in the air. And usually, spring means cricket and Winterthur CC returned back to the field with two 12-a side 20 over games against Zurich crickets. There was a bit of
spring cleaning over at WCC and the team sported a new look. In an inspirational change, Tom was given the reins of the team. The inspiration being that if Tom can play, anyone can! :-D Back from
their absences were tearaway speedster, Hasta and the much slower Rahul. Also joining the team this season were host of new faces along with trusted old timers.
In the first game, WCC batted first and newcomer Steve scoring 48(35) opened along with Jagath scoring quick 9(9). Steve could be the find of the season with the calm way he went about his innings. WCC has long been wanting a steady batsman at the top and given Steve's two innings of the day, we might have fixed part of the problem. With wickets falling steadily at the other end, Steve kept the scoreboard ticking initially and galloping later on. With Praful, Sara and Rohan scoring a combined 1 run(Sara top scorer with 1 run) :D WCC were facing a familiar collapse until Jiten rolled back the years and played a nice supporting innings 19(34). After Jiten and Steve were retired, it was a familiar story all over again. Mohamed the most chirpy/energetic fielder scoring 5(14), Imran scoring a quick 5(4) and our Flash Gordan of the day Rahul in and out of the field like a flash nominated as the most promising Golden Duck Award winner. The youngsters from Zurich crickets bowled and fielded brilliantly and surprised quite of few opponents with their quality. Osama was the pick of their bowlers with 3 wickets with Ashwin, Jai, Ruwan and Moaz picking 2 each.
Winterthur's bowling was restrictive but not penetrative with opening bowlers Rahul and Imran unable to breach the defenses of opening bats Callum and Osama. Once settled, the openers went against the rest of the bowlers with Jiten being the only one who bowled with some control and kept them on a leash. Jagath, Sara and Hasta were not effective in either curbing the runs or picking wickets. Jiten, though, picked up important wickets thanks to Hasta's butter fingers, Jagath managed to get a brillant catch at cow corner! a well judged catch covering quite a bit of ground and suddenly Zurich crickets were under a bit of pressure. However, with not much to defend, the rest of the batsmen managed to take them over the line despite some tight overs from Imran and Jiten along with Rahul's dramatic dive to stop the ball travelling straight at him in a 3 km/h speed :-D
With the opening loss out of the way, it was time for the second game where WCC bowled first. With a few changes in the team to rotate opportunities, WCC opened the bowling with Hasta and Imran who both maintained good control. For Zurich crickets, Jai and Tom played excellently for a 80 run partnership. They also flew in the master blaster Callum!! who was sharp behind the wickets and ballistic on the bowler !! At the end of the innings, the batsmen racked up 125 runs with expensive spells from WCC part-timers. Imran was the pick of the bowlers with 3 wickets.
Chasing 126, WCC lost an early wicket in Jico 4(5). However, Ram played an effective second fiddle11(18) to Steve, who continued batting fluently to make 34(21). After both retired, Rahul smashed the ball around for a quickfire 31(21) while wickets continued to fall around him. With the asking rate rising, WCC found a finished in Selva who calmly made 14(9) with a couple of much needed boundaries to take us home in 19 overs. Highlight of the day was Hasta's Catch!!! some of us didn't believe it but it is true that miracle happened as well !
It was a good first day of cricket and more than the victory, the important thing was to give a chance to everyone to dust off the winter blues and burn some holiday fat. WCC has an important season ahead and apart from good cricket, good spirit is needed in the dressing room. it is now important to all of us to come together and maintain our club's status as the most fun club in the country.