by Cricket Switzerland
Nomads CC got their 2016 CSPL campaign underway with a comfortable 70 runs victory over Bern CC at Schönau.
Nomads CC travelled to the capital city on a warm day to face an in form Bern team who had a bright start to their 2016 season. A newly relaid pitch welcomed the visitors in the picturesque surrounding’s. Plenty of runs were expected as compared to previous years on the new surface. Toss favored the visitors and skipper Lakkaraju had no hesitation in opting to bat.
Nomads openers Lakkaraju and Faheem Nazir walked in and quickly realized after the first few balls that it was not a wicket where runs would be easy to come. Opening bowlers Qadeer and Habib stuck to the lines and offered no loose balls. Qadeer soon got the best of Nazir, when he bowled him through the gate. Lakkaraju was next to go, caught nicely in the gully off a full-blooded drive by Aneesh and Qadeer once again was the successful bowler.
With early pressure applied, Nomads CC batsmen Kannan and Shafqat set about building the innings. With boundaries hard to come by, both of them focused on building a partnership by taking quick singles. However, the entry of Aneesh brought in a new dimension of difficulties for Nomads batsmen with the ball turning square. Shafqat was next to go caught at square leg and Kannan was caught in front of the stumps padding up. At drinks Nomads were struggling at 85-4 and in dire needs of a partnership.
Fortunes did not improve after lunch and the middle and lower order succumbed to the guile of Aneesh and were bowled out for 131. Aneesh was sensational, picking up 6 wickets for mere 13 runs followed by Qadeer who picked up 2 wickets. For Nomads CC extras were the top scorer with 33.
Albeit below the par score, Nomads knew that quick wickets would set the cat among pigeons but little did they expect as to what was about to follow. Bern knew that sensible batting should take them across the line. After delicious lunch, Tissa and Aneesh opened the innings but were quickly dented when Aneesh was caught at mid on trying to play a pull shot off Noman. Nomads CC exerted pressure by bowling good line and were rewarded with the wicket of Tissa when Farid got through the gate.
Spin was introduced in the form of Sudath and he quickly snared the wickets of Imran and the in form Aseem for 1. Bern CC was reeling at 35/4 and this soon became 39/6 with Sudath snaring Mailk caught brilliantly by Lakkaraju.Shafqat was then introduced into the attack and started bowling some unplayable leg breaks and Qadeer was dragged out of the crease by a well flighted ball only to be stumped by Lakkaraju. At 45/7 Bern were staring at defeat. A 15 run partnership brought the score to 60 when Lalith who showed technical capability of dealing with the spin was bowled off quick leg break from Sudath. The next ball produced the wicket of Amit and at 60/9 off 20 overs the writing was on wall. The second ball of 21 over saw Habib being bowled by Shafqat and the match ended with Bern all out for 61 and short of the target by 70 runs.Sudath was the pick of bowlers with figures of 5/15 followed by Shafqat: 2/9 and Farid: 2/16.
A massive victory for Nomads CC in a difficult game and with more games coming up, this should act as a confidence builder. In spite of the defeat, Bern CC still looks like a team who should qualify for the knock out phases of the competition. For Nomads CC, the caravan now moves to Freiburg where they will play in a PT20 game on 29 May and on the same Bern will take on Winterthur in their next CSPL game at Deutweg.