KCL South Outdoor 2024 – Match 11 Summary

Truthful Warriors v Merciful Conquerors

Cheam CC was the setting on a gloomy Monday evening for the first clash of the month of July, this time between the impressive Warriors against the Conquerors who needed to get their campaign up and running in the right direction. Hammad Butt has been getting favourable results bowling first of late, and this is what he decided to do once again having won the toss and putting the Conquerors in to bat.

The Conquerors were not in a particularly merciful mood having paired up the dangerous Safwan alongside Farhan, who carries a reputation of danger himself. The start, as expected was electric by the batters who raced to 26-0 in 2 overs. A much needed reprieve was provided by Naveed Hanif (2-26) for the Warriors who picked up important wickets of Farhan and then Zeyan (another potential brute) in the 3rd over. Mudassar joined Safwan at the crease, and then the carnage continued. Safwan who hasn’t been able to get a hold of the KCL this year, was today in the mood to repay his dues to the bowlers, dealing in fours and sixes only! A powerplay total of 85-2 meant a few of the Truthful Warrior’s opening bowlers had their figures ruined in their first overs, and the next 3 overs could only be damage limitation!

The wicket of Mudassar (21 off 12) from the bowling of captain Hammad may have been an important breakthrough in the context of the game. Safwan was still on the charge having reached his 50 off just 18 balls (the fastest this year), and soon the Conquerors had piled up a mammoth 120-3 by the 10th over. Qaiser Mahmood (37* off 41) took a bit of time to get going with the bat, and this allowed the Warriors to release some of the pressure on them with some economical overs. The momentum in the batting was sucked out through these economical overs, and also resulted in the wicket of Safwan who fell for a valiant 89 off 41 balls (7 fours, 8 sixes at a strike rate of 217!)

The Warriors continued to fight hard with good bowling, and eventually did bring the run rate down from below 10 by the 18th over; a fantastic effort considering the Conquerors were cruising at around 13 runs per over by the first half of the innings and looking to score a huge total. Eventually, the Conquerors ended with a score of 194-6, and the Warriors would definitely take this score instead of what the Conquerors were looking to set initially with Safwan blasting it to all corners!

Requiring close to 10 an over, the start was ideal and demonstrated excellent intent by Mohsin and Aamer Saeed. With 39-0 on the board in the first 4overs and on course with the required rate, Shahzad Ahmed was trusted with a 3rd over within the powerplay by captain Faizan Warraich, and this proved to be an excellent decision as Shahzad removed both well set openers with some smart bowling, and giving his side a firm grip on the match. The Ace spinner Usman Tahir was employed within the powerplay to deal with the Warrior’s crucial middle order batters (Bilal, Khurram and Zeeshan). The wicket of Bilal (19 off 11) was a massive scalp too by Usman, as the in form batter was now back in the hut leaving the Warriors with a massive, up hill task!

At 80-3 in 10 overs and requiring 11 an over in the final 10. The development of Taha as a strong all rounder has been one of the highlights of the KCL in general. Taha was called upon to bowl crucial middle overs against two accomplished batsmen in the form of Khurram and Zeeshan, and boy did he deliver for his side with an excellent spell of back of the length, hostile pace bowling and building extreme pressure! Taha’s spell of 2-14 (4 overs with an economy of 3.5) in the back end of the game totally broke the chase for the Warriors, who really struggled to get bat on ball and momentum throughout. Whilst Safwan got a slight taste of his own medicine too with some expensive overs with the ball, still, the Warriors fell well short of the total by finishing with 159-7 in their 20 overs.

The Conquerors were due a big performance with unsatisfactory results earlier, but the fact that their big gun match-winner fired today is potentially a sign that they are now here to play! The Warriors have generally been good and today is a setback that will teach them important lessons going forward. They are not far away from that play off spot, and they should look forward to winning their remaining league games of the season.