Cougars hold off the Incogs!
Metchosin 221 (Brussow 50, Duke 38, Rehman 34) held off a valiant Incogs chase 205 (Schultz-Franco 74, Sevenster 23, Saini 22)
Izak Brussow partnered well with Will Thomson to put up a game saving 63 run partnerships, resurrecting his own batting after a second ball duck in the previous match. The day started off with heavy clouds and remnants of the earlier downpour. The Cougars won the toss and elected to bat, with the two previous innings both seeing the chasing sides falling short. Duke & KP gave the homeside a steady start in difficult conditions. Cianan Van Heerden, bowling incredibly tight lines with an unlucky drop to stay out of the wickets. KP would soon be in the sheds, after an ill-fated pull shot off H. Saini. Harsh showing the difficulties that the MCG pitch can create as he snuck one through last season Sandra Harding Award winner Himanshu Bhardwaj. Early inroads from the Incogs had a few looks in the sheds as to whether batting first was the correct choice. This would not be the last time this sentiment was whispered.
Chris Duke combated the early wickets with his classic booming long on sixes to push the momentum in the other direction and settle the early nerves as the young Incogs squad searched high and low in the bushes for the ball. Dukey would soon find his way back to the pavilion though, as he attempted a 22-yard dash when the ball had already arrived too the keeper.
Tanzil Rehman would be next in and hoping to build off the previous two matches. Rob White & Tanzil began the rebuild from 53-3. Great running and some rather lusty blows brought the scores past 120 before the late-night groin work caught up to T as he was caught on the boundary. Rob would soon follow, lost without T he figured it was best to leave it to the skip and new debut Sai.
The skip immediately showing this was ill-advised as he continued on from the previous weeks catching practice with another chance for the opposition, taken. Previous weeks almost Mega-hero Viquar was very unlucky as Daljit threw up a one-handed stunner on the boundary to end any potential BDV fireworks.
Wickets coming down aplenty, piled on the pressure to Izak, with some early difficulties from Jamison’s end, the nerves began to calm around the ground as the runs started ticking up. Sai was next to go, more helpful Metchosin catching practice for the opposition. Will would show his class and find singles at ease to allow Izak to hit boundaries. One late wicket for the Incogs ended Izak’s innings as Jamison showed steady hands under the highball. Cole coming in against his old team and showing no nerves as the innings would end at 221-9.
The cockiness will hopefully wash away before next match, but even without opening bowler Tanzil, the Cougars attitude was that of a team about to canter to victory! They soon began to realize that maybe this would not be a walk in the park. The Incogs openers finding runs easily, as the required run-rate was right on target. Wickets coming at the 50 and just before the hundred mark to remove both openers. Some creative bowling by both Cole & Chewy finding the required results.
Incogs skipper Jamison would soon show his class, as anything short was quickly dispatched into the adjacent paddock. As wickets began falling at one end, Jamison continued forward with the RRR staying on track.
Enter K. Parfey, eager to affect the game, and that he did. Finding heaps of turn in the pitch, 4 wickets in 2 overs changed the course of the game from 166-5 with the prized wicket of Jamison, to 178-9. Unlucky to not get his maiden Metchosin 5fer, the final wicket coming from Rob White to end the Incogs chase at 205. Special mention to Metchosin favourite JK scoring an entertaining 13 for the Incogs.
Another round of applause to the Director of Grounds Mike Smith whose tireless work on the field had another 400+ runs game on a wet and grassy field, may you never have to buy a beer this season!
The Cougars will now have a weekend off and be fired back up for the United Victoria on May 28th.
Scorecard can be found here: https://www2.cricketstatz.com/ss/runreport2.aspx?club=23365&mode=100&match=460028