Khalsa through after a thrilling semi-final clash
KHALSA will take their place in the Jaidka Cup Final next week, but it was a shame anyone had to lose a quite brilliant game of cricket in Market Deeping last night.
After 365 runs in 40 overs, 12 sixes, 27 fours, some exceptional bowling at the death and enough fielding errors to fill a comedy DVD, the winning margin was just nine runs and the result was in doubt until two balls from the end.
Khalsa smashed 187-5 in their 20 overs thanks to two brilliant innings, one at the start from local taxi driver Amir Shazad and one at the end from former Portuguese international Tariq Aziz.
Shazad had completed his 50 by the end of the sixth over by scoring almost exclusively in boundaries. He hit successive maximums off Ali Sharp’s first two balls straight over the pavilion and into the car park.
Deeping fought back to reduce Khalsa to 106-5, but Aziz was still there and he found a useful foil in 17 year-old Aziz Khan.
Aziz played a superbly controlled innings of 61 not out, reaching his 50 in just 27 balls – eight balls faster that Shazad – and it appeared that the match was over by half-time.
But Deeping captain David Gillett and Jamie Morgan launched a thrilling counter-attack which incredibly had their side ahead of the rate on 99-1 after 10 overs.
Morgan was crucially run out by Meli Aditia’s fingertips when backing up a fierce Gillett drive and the little off-spinner then bowled the captain.
Sharp and Lee Peacock then blasted Deeping back into it before Aditia made his third crucial intervention by holding on to a difficult boundary catch to dismiss Peacock.
Thirty-six off four overs became 26 off three overs and then 18 off two overs. Teenager Khan bowled a brilliant penultimate over – especially as he’d gone for 50 in his first three overs – to leave Deeping needing 15 from the final six overs.
Aziz ensured they didn’t manage it, but, even though not a lot of thought was put into some of the bowling and the fielding was quite dreadful, cricket was the real winner at the perfect venue (excellent track, small boundaries) for a limited overs contest.
Khalsa now play Bourne in the final at Barnack next Wednesday.
HALF-CENTURY: Tariq Aziz