By Martin Kalyan
With last two games not fetching a result that the team was hoping for, captain Martin Kalyan had no doubt that Risinghurst will bounce back and perform to their potential in the semi-finals of the Steve Dixon Cup. On a fairly good day (as per UK weather station 😊), green pitch and short boundaries, the cap decided to bat first hoping to put up a total in excess of 220. The start was not up to Risi standards and things really slowed down when Martin (11) mis-timed an on-drive and handed a simple catch to mid-on. Sandeep and Saurabh tried to steady the ship but were unable to keep up the run rate. Some great fielding from Horspath young side dried up the runs and had Risi under pressure. Soon after drinks Saurabh (18) perished trying to up the run rate. Lucky (12) and Mansoor (19) played some good shots but failed to make a big score and Risi were looking at a score of less than 150 when Romi got out cheap. But Martin and Mansoor quickly huddled up to play a master stroke and decided to promote Govind up the order… who martin believes can change the game any time with his batting & bowling skills…Govind continued his form with the bat and made a quick fire 20 which turned out to be the difference to get to the par score…A couple of boundaries in the end by Sam and Sourav ensured that Risi reached a respectable total of 180.
The bowling opening duo Rakesh and Govind gave another thunderous start by troubling Horspath opening bats with great pace and swing. Rakesh particularly outplayed the top bats with couple of deliveries starting on leg stump and missing the off stump by a whisker. They cleaned up the opening bats soon with 1 wicket a piece. The first change bowlers Lucky and Sourav took the baton and kept the pressure on with some disciplined bowling. Lucky ( the brainy bowler ) took 2 in an over and Sourav (2 wickets) on the other end dismissed Horspath captain(with special delivery) and it looked like was going to be an easy win for Risi. But there was a twist in the tail and Horspath youngsters showed tremendous potential and courage, playing some good drives and lofted shots. Martin then decided to bring on JT who proved deadly with his slow left arm spin and it was too much to ask from the youngsters to hit him. The bowling change did the trick with JT (3 wickets) finishing off the tail to give a comfortable win in the end. Risi defeated Horspath 3 by 49 runs and will face Witney Swifts in the finals.
Well deserved man of the match Sandeep for another 50…. keep up the good form for the rest of the season…. And finally it was a pleasure to watch our fielders who gave their 💯% in the field and kept the pressure on opposition throughout the whole game…. so well done everyone for the effort 👍
A special thanks to Satish and Praneel for their availability, and kudos to our supporters who came to watch the match.