Are you still breathing? LCC vs CSUCC Thriller!
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Aasome Khokhar provided a thrilling tie for LCC with his 81*
Saturday witnessed a thriller between CSU and LCC. CSU had their tails up with win against the mighty Gold and LCC were on a high after toppling Green. Dharma called right and asked Aravind to take strike for his team. It was an interesting decision. Probably the weather forecast predicting extremely hot conditions in the afternoon might have played a part, not to forget LCC's 8 wicket win over Green while chasing.
Aravind and Prasad opened for CSU and safely negotiated the new ball. For LCC AJ and Phani bowled a tight line and did not allow Aravind to find his range. Prasad was struck on his helmet by a nasty one decided to fight it out for his team. Honors were shared at the first drinks break. From CSU's point of view they did not loose a wicket and as far as LCC was concerned they kept the batsmen on a tight leash. After drinks, Prasad decided to open up but his powerful square cut of Rama was brilliantly caught by Randhika with a score on 30 in 15 overs. Vaibhav came next and he and Aravind ran well between the wickets. They started to build up a threatening partnership till Vaibhav picked the only man at square leg boundary and was brilliantly caught by Keenan of Dharma. Smart cricket backed up by good fielding. A wicket well thought out.
Kishore came to the crease and one would have expected him to be rusty after his shoulder injury and long gap from cricket. On the contrary he was comfortable from ball one, and started middling well. Meanwhile, Aravind had got his eye in and played some trade mark pulls. One such shot of Randhika was his undoing as he miscued it and was comfortably taken. The score was 85 for 3 in 25 overs. CSU took the initiative and promoted their striker Tej Kiran in the batting order to step up the tempo. This was a positive move and it clicked as Kishore and Tej started to build a partnership that looked to take the match away from LCC. The temperatures in the field in and in the minds were rising and it was admirable to see Randhika bend his back and generate some good pace from the wicket.
With the experience of Kishore and Tej's clean hitting it was the best partership of the innings. By the time partnership was broken they had seen CSU past 140.Nitin came in and gave the hammering blow with couple of lusty hits. Nitin and Sudhanshu ensured that CSU put up a very formidable total of 182.
LCC had a lot to think and they came out with all guns blazing. CSU's opening bowlers Vaibhav and Nitin were put to the sword and it was a treat to watch AJ and Phani bat. The opening partership of 61 was so effortless that it made the attack that had looked so good against Gold pedestrian. Finally Phani nicked one and allowed CSU to crawl back into the match. Keenan came in and though he initially scratched around but hung in there even when AJ (caught behind of Nawale) and Randhika (trapped lbw by Vaibhav) got out in quick succession. He ticked along and kept the required run rate in check and it seemed that LCC had made a very successful chase out of it.
Aravind then pulled of a master move and brought Yogish into the attack. First he found the edge and then cart wheeled Magutha to be on a hat-trick. Suddenly one could hear CSU voices all around. LCC were looking down the barrel of a gun. But in came Aasome Khokar. He started with smashing Vaibhav on the street and offered similar treatment to any bowler that came his way. When you watch a great innings you learn a lot. The way it is built, the mental preparation and the execution. We all learnt a lot from Aasome Bhai's innings. Though the wickets kept falling around him, he maintained his poise and dismissed even the good balls with utter contempt and disdain.
This meant that now CSU had a match on their hands. LCC required 27 from the last 3 overs. Aravind gambled and made Vaibhav and himself bowl the first two. The gamble almost paid off as Aravind not only got a crucial break and reduced LCC to their last man Mohan but also induced Aasome to give a chance at fine leg which was dropped.
This meant LCC needed 22 of the last over to be bowled by Jay!
Ball 1: a wide..( Surely wides wont get them anywhere!)
Ball 1: smashes to long on straight to the fielder. The chance, its dropped! The non striker comes back for two. 5 balls 19 to win
Ball 2: smashes to the square leg boundary for four..inches from being a six! Can he do it!? 4 balls 15 runs.
Ball 3: My goodness HUUUGE SIX into the parking lot. 3 balls nine runs! I don’t want to be in the bowler’s shoes!
Ball 4: Smashes all along the ground to long on. He refuses to take the run! Chance for run out! Missed! Its all happening here! 2 balls nine runs - where’s your money?
Ball 5: Can you believe that ...Another TOWERING SIX. Aravind had a chance provided he was 50 feet tall!
One ball 3 runs to win, "2 for a tie" shout the LCC players.
Final ball: He lofts it, its in the air, the fielder runs. Batsmen scamper home for one, the fielder fumbles and the batsmen come for 2. Its a tie! Its a tie! CSU players are on the ground! LCC CANT BELIEVE IT !They pulled off a tie out of nowhere! Aasome Khokar the Hero!
Are you still breathing!
Are your nails still in order?
The character of a player is judged not so much in the victory but the way he faces up to defeat and fights like a gladiator. I must say it was the single minded determination of one man who simply refused to loose and saw his team home....well almost! Well played Aasome bhai!
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