Optimists Cricket Club WOCC (Walferdange Optimists) v AMCC on Sat 23 Apr 2011 at 13:00
Optimists Cricket Club Lost

Match report The Walferdange Optimists began their LCF campaign this weekend with an away fixture against Arcelor Mittal, played at Walferdange. In a topsy turvy game where the impetus swung from side to side on numberous occasions, Arcelor eventually ran out winners.

Many runs were there to be scored on what looked like a marvellous outfield, with the added rare pleasure of batting on the old wicket. With Arcelor’s top three batsmen of Sriram Venkatachalam, Mario Meyer and Aanand Pandey all putting in good performances, the home team reached a score of one hundred for the loss of a solitary wicket. As has been seen on countless occasions, the tide can quickly turn. Some good pressure with the ball by all bowlers, including the likes of Phil Burleigh, Sajid Butt and Muhammad Sadiq, and some poor running between the wickets saw a mini collapse as the scored was reduced to 132 for 6. Not allowing themselves to be completely skittled out, some good batting by Samir Kalra and Arvind Pandey at the business end of the innings saw Arcelor rally to a score of 155 at the end of their 32 allotted overs. Overall, it seemed to be a slightly below par score. The run rate, of just under 5 runs per over, required by WOCC seemed well within their run chasing abilities. On the other hand, nothing related to cricket in Luxembourg has seemed straightforward in recent times. Under clear blue skies, the two teams took lunch and pondered the upcoming run chase. Thunder and the threat of rain, however, were not that far off in the distance and would later come into play.

Lead out by their new captain, Suresh Kalagara, Arcelor took to the field to defend their modest total. Both opening batsmen for WOCC approached their batting in a watchful and positive manner. With ball in hand, Taral took the early wicket of Ali Saddiqui with a well-directed ball that seemed destined to hit the stumps had the batsman’s pad not stood in its way. Hovering above and all around, the storm clouds began to form, like an omen that might suggest trouble lay ahead. Even though the scoreboard continued to tick over and the batsmen kept up with the required run-rate, wickets began to tumble with worrying regularity. Bowling seemed a breeze for Ravi Ramanathan who removed three of WOCC’s top four batsmen. A pair of good innings from Jeroen van der Knoop and Sadiq helped steady the ship but even so the scoreboard still looked grim after 15 overs with the score at 60 for 6. Leg before decisions saw both batsman lose their wickets. Losing the match began to seem an inevitability as skipper Will Heath took to the wicket, only to return immediately as play was abruptly yet expectedly halted due to rain. Pouring rain fell over the ground for a good time but not long enough to require and rejigging of the scores or loss of overs. In defiant mood, Will returned to the crease determined to make inroads into the target and give WOCC a sniff of victory. Together at the crease with Paul Galliver in a thoroughly enjoyable partnership full of crisp shots, he went on to score a half century and began to turn the game back into the favour of the away side. Continuing along the same vain would have almost certainly seen a tight finish. However, a great piece of bowling from Kalagara saw Arcelor finally get the wicket of the WOCC captain and once throw the game back into the balance. Energised by the wicket and the smell of victory, the home team hoped to finish off the innings as soon as possible. Despite some nice shots and spirited performances by Charlie Ramsden and the rest of the WOCC tail, victory was assured by Aabhas Mandal, who took the final two wickets in consecutive delieveries and WOCC were all out for 134.

Overall the game was played in a good spirit and was a good early season encounter. Under the watchful eyes of Ben Lougheed, the two match day officials underwent an assessment, demonstrating the league’s desire to ensure a high quality level of officiating. Team members from both sides put on good displays and showed signs that match practise was fast returning. Sadiq, Sajid and Phil shone with the ball for WOCC. In the batting department for WOCC, Heath and the rest of the second half of the batting line-up showed signs of early season form. Decent to impressive knocks by Sriram, Aanand and Samir helped Arcelor to final batting total. Experience, persistence, pace and determination were the qualities shown by Arcelor’s bowlers with Desai, Ramanathan, Kalagara and Mandal all picking up multiple wickets.

Last week’s Captain’s vs. Chairman’s match and this weekend’s LCF fixture were both played on the old wicket in an effort to ensure that the fresh turf which was laid in the run-up to the new track was given as much time as possible to bed in. Expected to be playable in a week’s time, all games from now on are able to be played on the new track. Going into the rest of the season and looking forward, it is hoped that this year could prove a thoroughly exciting and vibrant rebirth, at all levels, of cricket in Luxembourg.


AMCC Batting
Player name RunsMB4s6sSR
for 5 wickets
155 (0.0 overs)
Sriram Venkatachalam b  Muhammad Sadiq 39
Mario Meyer ct  Burleigh Bowled Butt 16
Aanand Pandey b  Burleigh 33
Suresh Kalagara Run out  4
Taral Desai Run out  0
Aabhas Mandal ct  ? Bowled Sadiq 2
Samir Kalra Not Out  22
Arvind Pandey run out  Heath 14

Optimists Cricket Club WOCC (Walferdange Optimists) Bowling

Player NameOversMaidensRunsWicketsAverageEconomy
Phillip Burleigh7.0132132.004.57
Charlie Ramsden6.003400.005.67
Jeroen Van der Knoop7.002400.003.43
Sajid Ullah Butt3.00717.002.33
Muhammad Sadiq7.0140140.005.71
Paul Galliver2.001600.008.00

Optimists Cricket Club WOCC (Walferdange Optimists) Batting
Player Name RMB4s6sSRCatchesStumpingsRun outs
for 10 wickets
Ali Ejaz Siddiqui lbw  Desai 8
Tim Andrews lbw  Ramanathan 11
Joost Mees b  Ramanathan 0
Sajid Ullah Butt b  Ramanathan 2
Phillip Burleigh ct  Meyer Bowled Kalagara 1 1
Jeroen Van der Knoop lbw  Aanand Pandey 17
Muhammad Sadiq lbw  Desai 17
William Heath ct  Meyer Bowled Kalagara 50
Paul Galliver ct  Arv. Pandey Bowled Ramanathan 2
Charlie Ramsden ct  Kalra Bowled Ramanathan 7
Luca Galliver Not Out  0

AMCC Bowling

Player nameOversMaidensRunsWicketsAverageEconomy
Taral Desai7.0022211.003.14
Ravi Ramanathan7.012739.003.86
Suresh Kalagara7.0128214.004.00
Samir Kalra4.002000.005.00
Aanand Pandey3.0033133.0011.00
Aabhas Mandal1.20120.500.75