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Lagaan vs Eagles - Lagaan wins by 5 wickets
Lagaan won the toss and decided to bowl first - a decision based on the ground being a bit soggy. So, Lagaan started their bowling in good fashion, with Radha and Rajesh opening the bowling. The opening bowling was generally spot-on and within a few overs the Eagles were in a spot of bother - 3 down for 45 in 8 overs. Rajesh had two early wickets, including the extremely dangerous Amit and Varun, and Radha chipped in with one - courtesy a beauty of a catch by Rohan at point. The Eagles then began a consolidation effort and were going really well - before Ram produced a beautiful over to frustrate Satish (33) who later in the over holed out to Rohan. A few overs later, with the score at 178, Zubair holed out to Sriram off Umesh - and Lagaan was back in the game. A tight few overs by Sriram and Radha ensured that the Eagles would not run away with the game - and they were eventually all out for 216 of 30 overs.
The highlight of the Eagles innings was the clever stokeplay by Satish and Zubair - great running between the wickets by both of them and some hard hits to the fence. It was quite an intelligent piece of batting by these two good batsmen and they really laid the foundation for a big score.
Radha got 3 wickets for 43 off his 6, Rajesh got 2 for 32 off his 6, Umesh got 1 for 37 off his 6, Ram got 1 for 49 for his 5 and Sriram got 2 for 28 off his 4. Ganesh who bowled well today was unfortuante to go wicketless this game, 3 overs for 25. Pick of the bowlers was Rajesh with his accurate line and length and great controlled swing bowling. He was also the most economical of all the Lagaan bowlers.
Lagaan knew that they could get this total if they kept wickets in hand and so started the chase. We got off to a great start - 4 off the first ball from Sunil and 2 more boundaries in the same over by Umesh meant that we had 15 off the first over. However, we lost our first wicket in the 3rd over (Rajesh for 4). Sriram joining Umesh at the crease, they kept the runs flowing. Sunil was getting his line and length back after his expensive first over and with the ball swinging around, he was the one to watch out for. We were at 50 in 8 overs before Umesh (23 off 18 balls) was run out off a direct throw from Sameer and now Lagaan needed a strong partnership. In walked Rohan, and with Sriram, produced exactly what the doc ordered. Taking calculated risks and whacking the odd bad ball, they maintained the brisk scoring before Sriram was out, caught Zubair off Satish for 31 (off 27 balls). In walked new-comer Jay and they took the score from 78 for 3 in 13 overs to 148 in 22 overs before Jay was out for a well made 38 off 22 balls. A couple of Jays stokes were gorgeous - the six over mid-wicket being the best. Arun replaced Jay at the crease and he seemed determined to take the game home - but we were up against some good bowling by Zubair and Satish and some inspired fielding by the Eagles and now Lagaan needed almost 70 runs in 8 overs. Rohan and Arun played the most memorable innings - punishing the bad balls, taking 2's where there were 1's, hustling and keeping the asking rate in check. Rohan was starting to now take over with Arun as his partner it was a treat to watch their controlled agression. Rohan used the sweep shot to max effect - along with some well timed drives. But it probably makes sense to let the figures show you how beautifully these two timed their innings:
end of Over 23: Score 156; Wickets: 4; Runs needed: 61 off 7 overs
end of Over 24: Score 168; Wickets: 4; Runs needed: 53 off 6 overs
end of Over 25: Score 179; Wickets: 4; Runs needed: 42 off 5 overs
end of Over 26: Score 185; Wickets: 4; Runs needed: 36 off 4 overs
(Lots of nail-biting,nervousness in the 'dressing room' but Rohan
and Arun were cool as cucumbers at this point also.)
end of Over 27: Score 203; Wickets: 4; Runs needed: 18 off 3 overs
end of Over 28: Score 210; Wickets: 5; (Game almost over - Arun out)
28.4 overs : Rohan smacks the ball to midwicket and it is all over.
The over 27 was the key - 2 sixes and 1 four by Rohan settled the game . One six was straight and so huge that it almost cleared the ground twice !!! The other over mid-wicket landed 20 ft outside the boundary. Game, set and match: Rohan (Man of Match : Rohan)
The most heartening thing about our chase was it was calculated and executed to perfection - and Rohan, Jay, Arun and Sriram played a huge part in this. Rohan's innings was a gem - 57* in 36 balls and Arun ended up with 29 in 22 balls.
Overall it was a great game - had all the elements of a well contested game. The Eagles setup a big total with some calculated scoring, running between the wickets and hitting at the end. Lagaan replied with a burst at the beginning and then consolidated before a huge upsurge at the very end. Eagles bowling was top-notch with Sunil and Zubair being the pick of their bowlers.
League: 30 over, 2007
Group A Game: Lagaan vs Eagles
Umpire, Guru Krish, LCC Bats
Result: Lagaan won by 6 wickets.
It was a cloudy and dry day in the morning. Lagaan won the toss and decided to bowl first. Radha opened the bowling for lagaan along with rajesh. Radha bowled couple of wides in this first over and got his rhythm back in the next overs. Eagles lost couple of early wickets courtesy Rajesh bowling, who was bowling off cutters and late movement in the ball. Rohan took a splendid catch off Radha bowling which sent Varun back to pavilion, Varun played some good shots. Eagles last 3 wickets in short time and they desperately needed a partnership to get defendable score on the board. Zubair and Satish had dropped catches but after that they gave eagles what it was looking for. Runs were coming steady from both the players. Satish scored 38 runs and Zubair scored 80 runs. Sreeram bowled well in the crunch and got 2 wickets. Eagles scored 216 (all out) in 30 overs.
Lagaan started with Umesh and Rajesh, Umesh was playing his shot nicely and boundaries were coming easily. Sunil started the bowling and had little trouble finding the rhythm for the left hander. Shafi was swinging the bowl both sides and troubling the batsmen. Rajesh got out (caught by shafi) early of Sunil's bowling and Umesh was run out by a direct hit. Lagaan also last early wickets after the intial fire from Umesh. Rohan and Jai batted very well and supported each other. Waiting for the bad ball and punishing it to the boundary. Rohan was accompanied by Arun after the dismissal of Jai by Ashish. Rohan played a beautiful innings and the straight six of zubair was the best shot of the innings. Shafi bowled Arun but it was too late for eagles to contain, Rohan and Ram N finished the game in 29th over. Rohan was the MoM for his cameo 57 runs (not out) and 3 excellent catches.
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