Article - WEEK 3 MCA BEAT REPORT: A match-winning century, lopsided wins and a photo finish
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WEEK 3 MCA BEAT REPORT: A match-winning century, lopsided wins and a photo finish

Nishit Patel (npatel)
21-05-2019

WEEK 3 MCA BEAT REPORT: A match-winning century, lopsided wins and a photo finish

Match Week 3 in the MCA had it all this past weekend - dominating performances and tight finishes. The weather is slowly warming up as the summer kicks in, and the games didn't take long to heat things up to match. The quality of the groundskeeping by the City of Markham paid off with the two highest totals this season being set on the same ground. Our MCA Beat Reporter was there to witness it all...

Lopsided wins

KCC vs MKCC

Two stalwarts of the league faced off on what started off as a chilly Saturday morning, as MKCC won the toss and put KCC in to field. KCC once again showed off their bowling prowess, reducing MKCC to 42/5 by the tenth over of their innnings. Gagan Jr and Gursimran Singh offered some resistance in the middle overs, but couldn't bear the continuous pressure by the KCC bowlers and fielding unit, ensuring the MKCC innings was completed by the 26th over at 88 all out, with Anish Bhat and Parth Raval nipping out 3 wickets each.

MKCC started the defense of their total promisingly, getting a wicket in the first over, but couldn't stem the flow of runs as KCC went about chasing their total in measured fashion. Hopes rose and tempers flared (briefly) upon the fall of Man of the Match, Parth Raval (54), but his contribution ensured that MKCC remain winless after the first 3 games of the season, as the final few runs were knocked off to complete a KCC win by 6 wickets with 16 overs to spare.

Markhamites vs Raging Bulls

You know you are in for a rough game when both opposition openers score fifties, and that is what Raging Bulls experienced as Kirusanth Kobikrisna (73) and Kannathasan Gopoovarathasan (65) set their sights on a season-high score for their team; Kannathasan particularly taking a liking to the Bulls' bowling by scoring his runs off a mere 33 balls. Their wickets falling didn't mean that there was any respite for the Bulls, as Markhamites went on to score 248/9 in their 35 overs with handy contributions by everyone.

If there is a team in the league capable of matching the batting prowess showed earlier, it is that of the Bulls top order, but the pressure of the high score meant that they couldn't mount much of a challenge, getting bowled out for 84 runs. Shehara Dematagoda was the pick of the bowlers with an economical spell of 3/5 in his 5.5 overs, completing a comprehensive 164-run victory for the Markhamites and maintaining their perfect start to the season.

Markham Lynx vs Canadian Tigers

Having won the toss and electing to bat, Markham Lynx were off to a slow but steady start by their openers. However, a quick succession of wickets including two run outs meant that some consolidation was required. Canadian Tigers kept the pressure on, and despite a decent 33-run partnership for the 5th wicket (Amjad Khan, 28), Markham Lynx were only able to score 112 runs in the first innings - their innings completed within 29 overs. Aditya Pandya led the way with 3 wickets, ably aided by Nisarg Patel and Captain Kris Surana, who took 2 wickets apiece.

The Tigers openers saw off the Lynx opening bowlers and got off to a solid start, knocking off a third of the total without losing any wickets - Dhruv Patel leading the charge with a solid 35. Once again, a couple of wickets fell in quick succession, but Preet Bhatt (31) and Yonus Motara (29*) led an able recovery to comfortably chase down the target with 7 wickets to spare, completing a comprehensive victory for the Tigers - their first of the season.

Match-winning century

GTA Superkings vs Crimsonites CC

It didn't take long to top the season-high top team score set by the Markhamites earlier that day on the same pitch, as the Superkings demolished the Crimsonites bowling attack and put up a total of 269/3 in 35 overs. Captain and Man of the Match Shrikant Patel was destroyer-in-chief as he scored a breathtaking century (148*), showcasing some brilliant shots while batting through his team's innings. 

270 is a daunting target for any team, and Crimsonites were never really in the game after the crushing performance by the Superkings batting lineup. They folded for 78 runs even as the Superkings experimented with various bowlers, to complete a comfortable win by 191 runs. Shrikant Patel's century has been the performance of the season so far, and based on the evidence on offer, it'll take some beating. He ensured that the GTA Superkings could notch their first win in the MCA after a close loss to Markhamites in the previous week.

Free runs

Sunrisers vs Panthers

Sunrisers won the toss and elected to bat against the defending league champions, playing steadily up front. However, losing wickets at regular intervals ensured that they couldn't mount consistent partnerships to secure a large total. Aran Pathmanathan was the pick of the Panthers bowlers with an economical spell of 4/12 off his 7 overs. 30 extras from the opposition meant that Sunrisers ended their innings on a respectable 136 all out.

Panthers lost their openers cheaply, but a solid recovery led by Aran Pathmanathan steadied the ship. The wind in their sails was knocked out by Jugal Chokshi (4/20) and the Panthers could only manage 94 runs all out. It was an odd game with extras being the top scorer for both innings, leaving both teams with questions to answer...at least the Sunrisers will be pleased that they walked away with the win and 2 more points in the bag to ensure they have won 2 of their first 2.

Photo finish

Toronto Blasters vs Golden Sports

This was a nail-biter in the truest sense of the word, as the Toronto Blasters played out a low-scoring thriller against Golden Sports. The Blasters scored 114 in their first innings, after a 50-run partnership at the top of the order by their openers. Wickets from Eustus Jesuthasan (4/8) and Ranjith Nadarajah (3/21) ensured that their batting unit would have a low score to chase.

Toronto Blasters started off brightly, and tried valiantly to defend their total, but couldn't stem the flow of runs as they found the opposition at 98/3 with only 17 runs to get and 13 overs to go. Game over then, right? The fall of top-scorer Eric Prathap (40) meant that there was a glimmer of hope for the Blasters. Surely they couldn't pull this off...

The Blasters fought tooth and nail and kept nipping out wickets, with the 9th wicket falling at 112. Golden Sports had more than 8 overs remaining to score the last 3 runs required to secure victory, with their last two batsmen at the crease. For the Blasters, only a wicket would do. A couple of singles tied the game. There was a dropped catch at silly point when the game was tied, giving Golden Sports a much needed break. Victory by 1 wicket followed on the next ball, rather anti-climactically with a wide. What a brilliantly tense finish with both teams fighting to the very end. 

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The 6 matches played on Saturday provided a mixture of one-sided games and a tense finish. No doubts that the highlight of the weekend was the rolicking century by the GTA Superkings Captain, who outdid the Markhamites' performance earlier that day, laying down the gauntlet with season-high individual and team scores.

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