Second Match Report: Austria A-Team vs Mumbai Invitation XI
The second match was also in T20 format, played between the visiting Austria A-Team and an invitation team selected from Mumbai based players, who are spending the English summer playing for London based clubs as their overseas players – a strong and experienced group of players. It was again played on a wet, but drying early evening.
Austria A-Team batted first in what was to be a lower scoring match. Again Austria A lost a few early wickets, but when Amir (26 (32b) joined Aqib (28 (35b)) at 17 for 3, they set about building the best partnership of the day – 54. Both were out in quick succession and another wicket fell cheaply, but this brought Navin (28* (13b)) and Mark (12* (9b)) to the crease. With Navin hitting two 6s and Mark two 4s, they scored an undefeated 40 in less than 4 overs to post a defendable target of 120 for 6.
Austria A started the defence excellently, Waqar and Navin producing quality swing and seam bowling and reducing Mumbai to 20 for 4 off 6 overs. Waqar finished with 3 overs for only 7 runs, taking one wicket and Navin was the pick of the bowlers with 3 for 14 off 4 – adding to his all round performance. Mumbai fought back with some creative batting, but the early wickets, and the later excellent spell by Imran, 3 for 23, meant that the last wicket fell to Mark in the 18th over (and virtually in the dark!) still 19 runs short. This fielding display was a dramatic improvement on the first game – three catches and two run outs – and showed real individual and team development – it was more energetic, focussed and intense.
First Match Report: Austria A-Team vs Harrow St Mary CC, 27/8/15
The first match was a T20 format game between the visiting Austria A-Team and the hosts Harrow St. Mary CC. It was played on a wet, but drying afternoon on a grass pitch. The hosts included two Austrian players, Lakmal Kasturiarachchige and Satyam Subhash and a wealth of local and overseas talent, including an Indian U17 player.
Harrow batted first and posted a very competitive score of 152 for 3. Lakmal and young De Silva batted excellently for the first wicket, which put on over 60 and then Shivam joined the party with a quick fire 30. The bowling and fielding performance was good but lacked sharpness, and there were too many extras. Waqar and Akhilesh were the pick of the bowlers, Waqar taking 1-14 in 3 overs and Akhilesh bowling a very tight 4 overs. Other highlights were the excellent catches by Aqib and Navin.
In Austria A-Team’s reply, a couple of wickets were lost quickly, but Aqib (38 (28b)) and Klair (15) looked to be in control and building momentum until both were out in short succession. Another group of wickets were lost until young Zeshan (38* (25b)) and first Waqar (6) and then Muzammal (10) put together little partnerships. The batting of the joint top scorers was encouraging, although with differing styles – Aqib’s batting was quality and measured and Zeshan’s energetic and opportunistic.
The innings closed at 139 for 9 with the A-Team 13 runs short – a brave effort for this young, new side, playing its first game on grass and some good individual performances, but with room to improve.