Played at the London Marathon ground, Fairlop
Report by Steve Hamilton
This was our second visit East Ham Corinthians at the Marathon
Ground in Fairlop. This encounter did not prove to be a run-fest
like the previous match where 538 runs were scored. In fact, both
sides could only manage 216 between them.
I lost the toss yet
again! Third game in a row. Opposition chose to bat. We took to the
field with nine players.
We were without our opening bowler
Syed Shah who informed me 30 minutes before the start that he was
running late as he had just woken up, while Mohammed Rashid was held
up by train delays.
Did it matter? Of course not! Debutant
Anas Muhammad opened the bowling and did not disappoint. With the
aura of a professor who is always one step ahead of the rest, he
delivered pinpoint laser-like deliveries and took out the opposition
opening batsman Imran for three. The batter departed after playing a
cut shot that went like a bullet to gully where Fahim Pathan took a
Next up to create more carnage was our
lively leftie Talal Ali, our second highest wicket taker this season
on 16. He delivered the perfect ball to clean bowl opener Antik for
Muhammad continued to dismantle the Corinthians’ top
order. His next victim was Sammy for a duck, hitting off stump with
a yorker. He then trapped Abdul in front of his stumps and the
umpire had no choice but to send him on his way for leg before, also
for a duck. Muhammad finished with immaculate figures of 4-0-7-3 and
we had them wobbling at 18 for four after eight overs.
Corinthians consolidated and reached 58 without the loss of further
wickets. It looked like they were beginning to get back into the
game as but it turned out to be a short-lived revival, once
powerhouse Sultan came on to bowl.
Mozzam clean bowled
Shujaat for 10 and the Arun for a duck in a double-wicket maiden
over. He finished his masterclass in pace bowling with superb
figures of 6-3-8-2
Now the opposition were 58 for six off 18
overs and we were firmly in control. They only had one main batsman
left, Joseph, who had more lives than a cat! He was eventually
dismissed for 54 by Asad Saleemi who is now creeping up the wickets
table! Saleemi floated a tempter and the batsman took the bait and
never quite connected cleanly. The ball travelled towards mid-on
where a half-asleep but sufficiently alert Syed Shah took the catch
effortlessly in his usual cool and calm manner.
is our top wicket-taker this season with 18 victims. He deserved
more than one wicket in this match as he delivered a dynamic spell
of medium pace bowling. He took the wicket of their captain Adrian
for 14, trapped lbw plumb in front of his stumps. Jakeria ended up
with remarkable figures of 6-1-13-1
Fahim Pathan had control
and accuracy and was rewarded with the wicket of Mehboob for yet
another duck, the fourth of their innings and also the third lbw!
Fahim finished with tidy figures of 4-0-9-1.
Syed, our usual
opening bowler - whose late rising made him a little late - came on
at the end. It didn't take him long to get the final wicket of Tamim
for three. Tamim hit the ball towards gully where Asad Saleemi took
the catch handsomely and East Ham Corinthians were all out for 106.
Now it was time for the highlight of the day! An appetizing lamb
biryani followed by a delicious milk cake decorated with pistachios
was kindly provided by Jakeria to mark his birthday and it wasn't
too long before it all disappeared into our bellies! After that
delightful feast we were ready for the run chase.
We got off
to flyer with Mo Junaid hitting 19 off the first over with two
spectacular sixes and a four! But next over Junaid was out caught! A
mini collapse occurred as we lost two further wickets and found
ourselves on 24 for three.
We needed to steady the ship and
our two most accomplished batsmen, Mozzam and Adnan Walayat did
exactly that! Together they put on 43 for the fourth wicket before
we lost Adnan for 22 after he was caught at cover.
At 71 for
four off 24 overs we were making hard work of what should have been
a simple task! It seems like one mishap brings three and we lost
another two wickets in quick succession. Now we were stuttering at
77 for six off 28 overs and the Corinthians began to have hopes of
Mohammed Rashid came to the crease to support
Mozzam and added some calm to the situation. He played a vital cameo
and helped us over the winning line with a seventh-wicket
partnership of 33.
Mozzam sealed our victory with a straight
four and finished unbeaten on 39. His innings included four fours
and lasted 34 overs in a display of patience, poise and
We had done the double over East Ham
Corinthians! But will they want to see us again next season?