Strange day for Geneva CC with an astounding record, broken fingers and a disappointing loss

 

Lex Evaux, 28 May 2017, Pickwick T20 Cup vs XI Stars and XI Stars Seniors

Last Sunday, Geneva CC visited les Evaux to play against the two T20 teams of Geneva XI Stars. The day promised to be exciting, but the excitement abated as soon as the hosts displayed how slick they are in circumventing the Spirit of Cricket.

First match vs XI Stars Seniors

(Click on the results below to see the full digital scorecard!)

Geneva Cricket Club, 400 for 3 in 20 overs (Idrees 119*, Ali 105, Anser 95), beat Geneva XI Stars Seniors, 98 all out in 16.4 overs (Aamir 3-15, Kashif 2-2), by 302 runs

Indeed, the first match was to be played at 11:30 against XI Stars and the second match at 14:30 against XI Stars Seniors. It was unfortunately not a surprise for us to quickly realise that only players from the latter were here before the toss. As per the Cricket Switzerland Twenty20 rules, XI Stars should have forfeited the first match. Our team asked the neutral umpire to take a decision, but such thing was ultimately left in the hands of the teams’ captains.

With the decision upon us, we could only act the way we tend to do: in line with the Spirit of Cricket and by giving everybody a chance to play. Our lenience towards unprofessionalism and laziness might have costed us the second match, but we were here to play cricket and have fun. We thus accepted to play the first match against the weaker GXI Seniors (which, by the way, was composed nearly exclusively of youngsters that day, but that is irrelevant), even though we were aware that such outcome would undoubtedly favour the main XI Stars team.

The whole mess was not over yet… the first match started late because four players from GXI Seniors were not wearing the same jerseys. The masquerade lasted 9 overs and until then, only 7 players were fielding! Furthermore, GXI Seniors played with an unregistered player, underlining again the lack of consideration that the hosts have for rules.

The game ended up being the most one-sided match we have ever witnessed in a Swiss national competition. Exactly 400 runs were scored in the first innings, thanks to two roaring centuries from Idrees (119 not out) and Ali (105) and a authoritative 95 runs from our skipper Anser. It is the largest known score ever recorded in a Pickwick T20 Cup match. Idrees also equaled Ali’s record of scoring 100 runs in 29 balls! From 300 runs reached in 16.4 overs, the ultimate score of 400 runs was reached only 20 legal deliveries after!!! Crazy stuff

It was very obvious that many of the GXI Seniors’ players were not regular cricketers and had plenty of difficulties on the field, with the bat and the ball too. Despite the insane scoring, the bad organisation tainted the feeling of victory and left a bitter taste in our mouths.

Second match v XI Stars

The second match was a totally different business as XI Stars aligned with their main players. Despite our team fielding two players with broken fingers, two others with neck and back injuries and despite also the fact that six of our players were fasting that day, we came on the field convinced that we could win this match. Challenge was taken!

(Click on the results below to see the full digital scorecard!)

Geneva XI Stars, 213 for 8 in 20 overs (Raja 78, Houmayoun 49, Afif 4-41), beat Geneva Cricket Club, 157 all out in 15.5 overs (Kashif 48, Raja 4-26), by 56 runs

Geneva CC started with the bowling and Afif took two superb wickets in the first over by crashing Kuldeep’s leg stump for a golden duck and tricking Mamdi into a missed slog that ended up in Kashif’s hands at mid off. Lalit at no 4 fell in Afif’s second over (21 for 3 in 4 overs), leaving Raja and captain Houmayun with the difficult task to build up their innings. They did so beautifully, with Raja hitting big shots out of the park. The two built up a great partnership, only to be broken in the 12th over by Dalvinder who took a nonchalant catch at deep square leg from Ronak’s bowling. Despite Ali’s great spinning efforts and a very decent fielding performance, Geneva CC’s bowlers could not properly stem the flow of runs of the lower middle order. Moreover, Ronak broke his left thumb while attempting to take a return catch. Another victim to the hard ball!

XI Stars reached a good score of 213 runs for 8 wickets. Definitely chaseable on that ground. Nonetheless, the second innings proved to be too much for some of our players who simply could not play their natural game. Empty bellies and a scorching sun took the best of our own stars. We cannot take away the intelligent bowling performance from XI Stars though. By bowling slow on a pitch that is already fast like a snail, our main batsmen fell quickly. Four wickets fell in the first four overs. Leo and Kashif then started to chase the score slowly but steadily, to the point that the over comparison with XI Stars’ innings was holding. No bleak outlook at this stage, but the only issue was that too many wickets were down. With Leo and Kashif dismissed, Raja guillotined the team in the 14th and 16th overs by taking four wickets. The hosts won by 56 runs.

Now, there is only one thing left for us to do: practice and work hard to ensure that our two last games in the Pickwick T20 Cup can be won!

 

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