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Cougars start the 2021 season in winning ways!

Islanders Vs Metchosin – MCG June 12th

The cougars had their season opener on Saturday against the formidable Islanders CC. It would be the 12th matchup between the two sides with the islanders winning ten of the last 11 matchups.

With the rain forecasted for the evening and sunshine at the toss, the cougars quickly jumped at the occasion to field. With only a few training sessions and one practice match to prepare the team it was going to be interesting to see just how ready the Cougars were. Thankfully, the previous Thursday’s training was on point for the focus of the fielders, and this was obvious from the first over.

Izak and Tanzil took the new ball and had the two Islanders openers in all sorts. Tanzil was first to strike when he had Prashant well caught behind by Dilip. With the runs trickling at 2 an over, the pressure continued to rise for the away side. Tanzil picking up another wicket and Rajeev putting on a masterclass run out to have the away side questioning Bonnie Henry’s stage 2 opening.

The high-class bowling continued with Will and Chewy strangling the batting side with tight lines. Impressively, Dilip continued to find his way into the game and kept up to Will’s bowling, much to the chagrin of the aging fast bowler and to the complete demise of the caged batsmen!

The away side chipped away as best they could, but all the bowlers had answers and the with the wickets falling the end was inevitable for the innings. It took a high catch from Mikey to end it and Rajeev returning to the wickets once again.

A quick tea break without tea was had, thankfully the last tea less tea now we’ve entered the next stage of the loosening pandemic restrictions!

The clouds entered and the skip and KP trudged off to begin the chase. Some early swinging conditions had the openers querying the bat second mentality, but the suffering wouldn’t continue too long as the skip found the safe hands of gully and KP lost his offstump the next ball. Dilip was next to go with his bat apparently out of the crease on the return throw. The cougars looking at a 14-3 chase, and wondering if there was enough in the cooler to calm the nerves.

Chewy and Dukey then began to put the sword to the bowlers, and thankfully the runs began to flow. It would be a common theme, Chewy setting up shop and attacking the loose deliveries, and the other batsmen going full bore aggression as Metchosin began to tick away at the 144 score. Several more wickets were to fall. With Dukey holing out, Jon inspecting the umpires ability to see an LBW and Will showing us how great tape is at attracting a thin edge.

At 73-7 the uneasiness was rife but was not to last as Izak came in guns blazing and upped the boundary hitting competition with Chewy. Both hitting some massive sixes, though Chewy’s shot of the day over extra cover for six on the long boundary will live long in the memory, although it did make young George cry.

Izak would tamely hand his wicket away and allow Tanzil to steal the show with his always aggressive style and leave the Islanders rather shellshocked. The first 25 overs went for 73 runs and the remaining 72 going in under 11 overs. Himanshu was the standout player amongst many impressive performances, with 45 runs not out and 2 wickets.

A great return to the weekend league for the Cougars and a forward look to the Incogs match the following Saturday back at the MCG.

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