After a nice warm-up session, OCC's skipper Vikram won the toss and happily decided to bat first against a strong opposition from Brussels on a cloudy day with expected rains later. Continuing with the same opening pair from the last match, Girish attempting a cut short unfortunately got caught at point in the third over of the off spinner which brought Joost to the middle who tried to spend some time in the middle after OCC lost James who was caught by the keeper. Then sudden fall of Joost and Tony on the very next ball saw OCC in some serious trouble at only 18-4 in 7 overs. With skipper at one end, in walked Shiv. While Shiv took on the opposition bowler with some delightful cover drives, skipper Vikram made sure OCC got back into respectable position by not losing more wickets. With their splendid 100 runs partnership OCC transferred the pressure right back to RBCC, before weather Gods intervened at the end of 29 overs with the score at 120-4.
After the rain break match was curtailed to 40 overs which meant that both the batsmen had to accelerate in the remaining overs in difficult conditions for batting with the outfield on the slower side and pitch being spicier. In the next over Vikram got out trying to accelerate the score, for a well-made 40, bringing Reinhardt to the crease who holed out to the deep cover going for a six. Then joined Jatin who added a quick 47 run partnership of 31 balls before Jatin departed with the score at 183-7 in 37th over. Next 2 batsmen fell to some good wicket to wicket line and got out LBW to the spinner Muneeb who ended up with a hat-trick. Shiv ultimately ran out of partners and OCC ended up all out for 190 in 39th over and Shiv remained not out at 86 of 91 balls, falling short of a what would have been a well deserved 100. With DLS calculations coming into play final target for RBCC was 200 in 40 overs.
Though falling short of a target (what OCC would have wanted to put on board) by 20 odd runs, skipper Vikram had full belief in the impressive bowling line-up. RBCC openers played cautiously in the opening spell of Ankush and last match's hero Will and took the score card to 51-0 in 10 overs. Next set of bowlers Jatin and Vikram bowled impeccable line and lengths and RBCC just could not cut loose. After a few ooohs and aaahhs and lucky inside edges for their opener who otherwise looked solid, Vikram got rid of him on a classic outswing edge thanks to an excellent flying catch from the keeper, Joost resulting into a score of 65-1 at the end of 16 overs. Skipper introduced Amit next who started off well with a maiden over and got rid of the opposition's captain trapping him LBW followed by another one with his skiddy seaming deliveries in his following overs. Tony got into the act as well and got a wicket with his ever-teasing loopy off spinners. OCC were strongly back into the game with the scorecard reading 101/4 at the end of 25 overs.
OCC knew next RBCC batsman Khurram can accelerate well. This saw the field dropping a bit denying him of boundary opportunities early on. In his second spell, Vikram bowled good tight lines to rid of Khurram before he could be a threat. He followed by another wicket caught by Girish at covers in his next over before having a terrible cramp to sit out for the remainder of the match, nonetheless a brilliant spell. With skipper injured, Joost took over. 12th man Vishy took the field and had an immediate impact with 2 sharp run outs with the crowd cheering more than ever. RBCC just could not catch up with the increasing run rate. While Ankush and Will build pressure of dot balls, Amit and Jatin finished the proceedings by taking the last 2 wickets between themselves. RBCC finished at 158 in the 39th over thus resulting in a victory margin of 41 runs in the process, letting OCC gain partial bonus points as well.
All in all, a brilliant day with bat for Shiv, great outing for the bowling unit and good day in the field with no dropped catches. We march onto the next week against a new opposition looking for another positive result.