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Island ride high after dominating Laguna

PHUKET: An undefeated Laguna went into last Sunday’s Island Furniture League match looking to maintain their winning streak and join Village on top of the table.

Friday 24 February 2012, 03:21PM


But they were undone by a solid Island Cricket Club (ICC) outfit, who advanced their title hopes and ensured a thrilling second half of the season with their comprehensive victory.


The heavy overnight rain resulted in the start of the match being delayed by 30 minutes. ICC won the toss and had no hesitation putting Laguna into bat on a rain-affected wicket which was always going to make batting difficult in the morning session.


Their decision soon paid dividends with an early breakthrough in the second over, with opener Bill Stahmer (0) being given out lbw not offering a shot, just one ball after he was nearly run out.


Val Guiraud (19) and Darren Shaw (12) both looked in good touch before Guiraud was bowled to a ball that kept low in the wet conditions in the ninth over with the score on 38.


Shaw fell soon after, quickly followed by Sameer Khan (8) who was caught by Ali Khan at deep mid-on trying to push the run-rate along.


At 4-61 in the 16th over, Laguna were feeling nervous.


However, captain Stuart Reading (33) and Andrew Cole (31 not out off 81 deliveries) stabilised the innings with a 55-run partnership before Reading also fell in similar fashion to Guiraud.


The tail end, which had not been tested thus far during the season, capitulated apart from a brief cameo innings from big-hitting Shane Gleeson (16).

New Paths Retreat

 

Laguna were eventually bowled out for 155 runs from 38 overs, being contained by some very tight and accurate bowling from ICC. Pick of the bowlers for ICC were Ibrahim Mushtaq (3-20), Virender Kumar (2-25) and Sandeep Sharma (2-45).


The ICC innings got off to a similar start to Laguna after losing captain Anand Chand (4) in the first over.
However, fellow opener Sandeep Sharma (45) and Virender Kumar (25) put on a 63-run partnership to set the platform for the innings.


Ibrahim Mushtaq (2) then fell to a sharp catch at backward point by Stuart Reading followed quickly by Surender Kumar (0) who was clean-bowled by Val Guiraud.


At 5-98, the match looked as though it could go either way. However, with ICC’s superior run-rate, Laguna knew that their only chance for victory was to bowl ICC out, so brought back on their opening bowlers to lead the charge.
However, Ali Khan (58 not out) had other ideas, and led ICC to victory in the 28th over with a brutal knock from only 40 deliveries. Pick of the bowlers for Laguna were Sameer Khan (2-40) and Val Guiraud (2-42).


Man of the match was Ali Khan with Sandeep Sharma and Ibrahim Mushtaq picking up second and third place respectively.


The Village remains on top of the tightly packed table with only two points separating the top three places.
This Sunday sees Thanyapura News Tigers take on Liquid Lounge Lizards, with both teams looking to secure their second victory of the season.

 

 

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