The final group matches of the Ghana Cricket Association’s New Year Invitational T20 League saw Karizma beating Hurricanes in group A by 75 runs, before a superb performance by Punjab IPMC halted Carel Super Kings’ unbeaten run by just 8 runs victory on Sunday, February 26, 2023.
Karizma, who missed out on qualification to the semi-final, after losing two matches, won toss and scored 148/5 in the morning match played at the Achimota Cricket Oval C in 102 minutes.
Karizma lost the first wicket on the 5.2 over, when captain Rohit Makhija 21(18) tried to hit his second boundary four in succession but was bowled by Pankaj Gaur. He was Replaced by Kush Shah (), who was doing really well but was also caught by Thrishool Shetty from Omprakash Saran Saran delivery on the 8.4 over.
Anand Paramasivan 40(28) had a great partnership with opener Suraj Pujary 48(51) which produced 72 runs in 9.2 overs, until Anand was dismissed by Ram Yadav via lbw on the 17.6 over.
Hurricanes, having lost all matches except a win against bottom side Ras Bingi had to chase, but managed 73/10 in 15.2 overs, where captain Gaurav Sharma scored 26(23).
Karizma’s Sabreesh could have done more harm to Hurricanes, as his 3 overs in the bowling crease, took 3 wickets and gave away 17 runs (3-0-17-3) just before the 7th over, having gotten a brace, in the 5.1 and 5.2 overs respectively. With an Economy rate of 5.67 Sabreesh produced 13 dot balls, 4 wides, 1 boundary four and was adjudged the Player of the Match.
Karizma finished 4th with 7 points, 3 away from the top and 2 away from Defenders XI and BGC, as they promise to come back stronger and better in the next tournament.
A determined Punjab IPMC in the afternoon spoilt the 100% winning record for CSK after winning toss and electing to bat first in the week 19 fixture.
Led by Rahul Awasthi, Punjab only sacrificed 5 wickets to get 111 on the scoreboard in 20 overs. Vikram Kumar 19(34)*, was the partner for all, as he opened with Anmol Singh Virk, who saw an early exit.
Although Punjab didn’t see most of their batters exceeding 20 runs score, apart from eventual Player of the Match, Kopdeep 22(25), they had a decent first innings with 25 extras, which was enough to use to torment leaders, CSK in the second innings.
Punjab had to also limit the batters of CSK below 20 runs, apart from Vignesh Nainar 24(28). The likes of Sam Michael Merbin, and Captain Selvaraj were dismissed before the crucial moments of the game, having scored less than 5 runs. It looked like CSK could do it but the exceptional bowling of Punjab kept CSK careful in making runs.
Captain Rahul and Gaurav Sharda alternated bowling and restricted CSK with 3 wickets to protect and 25 runs to win from 30 balls. Eventually, Gaurav took 2 wickets in the 15.1 and the 17.5 overs, and Rahul finished it up on the 18.5 over, with a clean bowled of Vignesh Nainar while CSK managed 103/10 and Punjab won by 8 runs.
Kopdeep was adjudged Player of the match as he took 4.0-1-18-4.
CSK’s loss meant, all 14 teams in both group A & B have lost at least 1 match in the group stage.
CSK finished top with 10 points and +2.57 NRR, while the U-19 Team come 2nd with 10 points and +0.10. Don Bruce and Punjab IPMC share 8 points each, whereas Swami Sports, Champions United and Salt n’ Pepper follow with 3, 2 and 1 point respectively.
On Sunday, March 5, 2023, Supreme Cricket Club will begin the day with a tie against the U-19 team for the first semi final at 9:00am, before Carel Super Kings come up against Defenders XI in the afternoon.
By: Davis Nii Attuquaye Clottey