The St. John’s cricket renaissance continues..

P1012009

Cricket at the historic Feildian Grounds

A report from Dave Liverman
Cricket made a triumphant return to the Feildian Grounds in St. John’s Newfoundland on a fine sunny afternoon in late July. The last match played at the historic Grounds before today was likely the match between the Feildians and the Royal Navy in 1946, almost exactly 65 years ago. This was also likely the first league match played since at least the 1970s, and marked a major advance for cricket in the province. We’d had successful tapeball games last year, but this was the real thing, hard ball, pads, gloves and other protective gear.
This was also the christening of our new artificial pitch, generously donated by Atul Ahuja. The pitch was laid out on a prepared strip of grass in the middle of the soccer field and played acceptably- despite cutting and rolling the underlying surface was not as even was we would wish, and the bounce was somewhat unpredictable. Most importantly though it was safe. The pitch is only half length so we adapted the game somewhat, bowling from one end only. The presence of soccer goals also required some ground rules, with four runs being awarded for anyone who could score a goal in the net at fine leg. The teams soon adapted and positioned a fielder in the goal-keeper position.!

The teams have been selected from the players who registered for the summer league, and Cricket NL did their best to balance the squads into three well matched teams. Their success can be measured by the fact the first match came down to the final over, and was decided in the favour of the Newfoundland New Borns by just four runs. The New Borns batted first, and found run scoring difficult due to the longish boundaries and heavy grass on the outfield (there was only a single four in the innings and this was scored in the goal nets). Captain Gurman Moula led the way with a well paced 27, including a couple of big sixes; one was superbly caught in the deep, but, in the spirit that pervaded the game, the fielder indicated he had crossed the boundary.
The Thunderbolts struggled against some excellent bowling when they made their reply but batted sensibly in chasing a modest target. Moula swung the game again, taking three wickets as it looked as though the Thunderbolts would cruise home. It looked as though his tactics of bowling out his top bowlers would backfire but Himadari and Saifan shouldered the responsibility of bowling the last three overs, defending just 13 runs. Himadari bowled Cricket NL president Luftor Rahaman with the first ball of the last over to secure a narrow victory.
This was the first of four games on the weekend at the Feildian Grounds. The Grounds may be a temporary home for the League as it looks as though we may be able to secure a more permanent home at the Torbay Rec centre, but there was a particular pleasure in seeing cricket played on a ground that was built for it. The Feildian Grounds are as an attractive ground as anywhere in Canada, with the Rennies River flowing along side, and surrounded by huge mature trees. A few shades of former Feildians maybe enjoyed the sight of cricket rising again in the City.

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Scorecard
1st match, Cricket Newfoundland and Labrador Summer 20-20 League
30 July 2011
Venue: Feidlian Grounds, St. John's

Toss: Newfoundland NB
Umpire: Dave Liverman

Result: Newfoundland NB won by 4 runs

Newfoundland New Borns innings
Asim c Kathir b Kulkarni 12
Shakil b Kathir 9
Gurman c Kulkarni b Ayaz 1
Nasir Shovon c Ranjith b Ajaz 1
Himadari b Abu Azraf 7
+*Gurman Moula b Dongare 27
Ashwin Gupta c Kathir b Ranjith 4
Rajib not out 6
Saad b Kathir 0
Nitin run out 0
Extras (lb 2, w 16, nb 1) 19
Total (9 wickets, 20 overs) 85

Bowling O M R W
Dongare 3 0 10 1
Luftor Rahaman 2 0 10 0
Kaivallya Kulkarni 1 0 7 1
Ayaz 1 0 6 2
Ranjith 2 0 10 1
Kathir 4 0 11 2
Abu Azraf 3 0 13 1
Shammen 4 0 18 0

Thunderbolts innings
Ajaz c ? b Nasir Shovon 1
Shammen c & b Saqib 1
Surya b Gurman Moula 22
Chithran b Nasim 1
+J Ratcliffe lbw b Gupta 8
*Kathir b Gupta 3
K Kulkarni b Gurman Moula 10
Luftor Rahaman b Himadari 4
Prateek Dongare b Moula 0
Ranjith c? b Himadari 4
Abu Azraf not out 3
Extras (b 4, lb 3, w 17) 24
Total (all out, 19.1 overs) 81

Bowling O M R W
Saqib 4 0 14 1
Nazir Shovon 4 0 13 1
Gupta 4 1 21 2
Asim 1 0 6 0
Gurman Moula 4 0 14 3
Himadari 1.1 0 3 2
Saifan 1 0 5 0

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