Under 15’s are Middlesex County Indoor Champions
The 22nd of April 2012 marked yet another chapter in the brief history of the MTSSC Colts. Our under 15 team was the first MTSSC team to reach the Middlesex County Indoor finals and made us all proud by winning the competition at the first attempt.
After being crowned North area champions, we were in the finals with North Middlesex and Ealing Cricket Club. This time the finals were conducted in a slightly different format. Instead of a knock out system the County introduced a league system. Each team played 2 matches each and the team with the highest points being crowned champions.
The first game was between North Middlesex and Ealing. This was a close encounter with Ealing winning by 3 runs. The next game was the key game between MTSSC and Ealing. It must be said that if Ealing had won this game they would have been crowned champions as they would have won both their games. We won the toss and elected to field first. We started off very well against Ealing and at one time Ealing were 35 for the loss of 2 wickets at the end of their 6th over. However some loose bowling enabled Ealing to reach a very respectable 99 runs of their 10 overs. This meant that we conceded 64 runs in the last 4 overs. We conceded far too many extras. We conceded 24 extras in total which meant that Ealing only scored 75 runs off the bat. The stunning reflex catch by Beeshman to get rid of Russell off Ashwin’s bowling deserves a special mention.
Even though we were required to score 100 to win, we were confident that we could reach this score and we opened the batting with Seerone and Kishan. However we didn’t get off to the start that we were hoping. We lost Kishan to a run out in the 4th ball of the first over when the score was just 6. Ashwin then joined Seerone but we lost Ashwin in the very next over when the score was just 19. I’m sure quite a few of the spectators were beginning to doubt our team at this point and if I’m honest, so did I. Sachin then joined Seerone and the 2 of them batted beautifully. Then punished the bad balls and kept the scoreboard ticking with their singles. They took the score to 70 in the 7th over before Seerone had to retire after scoring 33 runs. This was an excellent knock as his runs came off 15 balls and included 2 sixes and 1 four. We were still on target but Sachin was also now nearing 30 runs and the question on everyone’s mind was who would step up to take us to the target of 100 runs. The answer came in the form of Beeshman Mahen. Beeshman joined Sachin and Beeshman took on the task of accelerating the scoring. We were 72 at the end of the 7th needing 28 off the last 3 overs. The 8th over brought us 14 runs to leave us needing 14 off the last 2 overs. We needed a good 9th over so that we didn’t have too much to score off the last over. Beeshman made sure of this with a brilliant six in the second ball of the 9th over. At the end of the 9th over the score was level needing just a single to win the match. The pressure told on Ealing with the first ball of the 10th over being a wide ball to give us victory. Sachin ended up on a brilliant unbeaten 29 which came off just 18 balls. His knock contained just 1 boundary but had 8 singles. Beeshman too ended up on an excellent 25 runs which came off just 16 balls. His know consisted of one six, one boundary and 4 singles. So we won the match with an over to spare losing only 2 wickets in the process. One down and just one more match to go.
The second game was against North Middlesex and in this game we showed what a bunch of talented boys MTSSC had. We lost the toss in this instance and were put in to bat. As usual we opened with Seerone and Kishan. Both openers batted well and had to retire after reaching a total of 30 runs. This was Seerone’s 31 runs was his second retirement of the day and his knock consisted of 2 sixes, 2 boundaries and 3 singles and only came off just 14 balls. Kishan’s 33 runs contained 2 boundaries and 7 singles and came off 20 balls. At the half way stage of 5 overs we were 65 for no loss and well on our way to a big total. After the openers retired, Beeshman and Sachin took over. The North Middlesex scorer was so disheartened with their team that he made a comment to the effect of “Do we really need a Sachin coming in now with the current total”. We sadly lost Sachin for 6 in the 8th over with the total on 91. Ashwin then joined Beeshman and took the score to 125 before Beeshman was out caught for 17. Pira then joined Ashwin and the two of them added a further 10 runs in the 3 remaining balls to help us finish on 135 runs for the loss of 2 wickets in our 10 overs. This is a staggering 13.5 runs per over. Out total consisted of 2 sixes, 5 boundaries and 27 singles. This batting performance broke the hearts of not only the North Middlesex players but also the hearts of the Ealing players. The Ealing players were hoping that North Middlesex would beat us so that it went down to a Net Runs per Wicket calculation. When North Middlesex came out to bat, they struggled against our bowlers and lost wickets at regular intervals. They lost their first wicket of Miles to a smart piece of stumping by Pira for a duck with the total on 6 in the first over. They finally were bowled out for 53 runs in the 7th over. Pira had a brilliant game behind the stumps and made 2 smart stumpings. Kishan took a wicket in his and the teams first over and finished off the match by picking up 3 wickets in his second over which was the 7th over of the game. Two of these 3 wickets were down to excellent catches off his own bowling. It must also be stated that Kishan played the second game in some pain after pulling his hamstring which fielding. The only negative of our bowling performance against North Middlesex was again the number of extras conceded. Once again we conceded 25 extras out of a total of 53.
So MTSSC U15’s were crowned Middlesex County Indoor Champions 2012 with each member of the squad receiving a medal. The team was also presented with the trophy in an awards ceremony that took place straight after the match. Ealing finished runners up and North Middlesex finished 3rd.
By being crowned County Indoor champions, we ensured that the trophy remained in the North Area for yet another year. In the 11 year history of the tournament a North area team has won it 9 out of 11 times. This just goes to show how strong the North area league is and also highlights the achievement of being North Area champions.
The winning squad comprised of
- 1. Ashwin Muttiah (Capt.)
- 2. Sachin Manoraj
- 3. Seerone Kandasamy
- 4. Kishan Patel
- 5. Beeshman Mahen
- 6. Pirapanchan Arulnanthy (wk.)
- 7. Surendra Devda
- 8. Dilshan Peerez
With regards to thanking people where do I start? Firstly we need to thank the coaches Keerthi, Flavian and Vernon. This was Vernon’s original U13 team that went unbeaten in 2010. Keerthi then took over and pushed them all the way. The running between the wickets is 100% down to Keerthi and we owe him greatly for improving all aspects of their game especially the fielding. Flavian also helped the team even though he joined mid way of the Spring term and it was good to see him present at the matches including the finals. Thanks to Vernon for all the help in coaching.
Next comes the Under 15 Manager Nathan who worked tirelessly to arrange training outside of the normal club training for the squad. Booking coaches and nets and contacting parents whilst working full time is no easy feat. Mano for umpiring all the North area games and for all the assistance and his cricketing knowledge. The parents who brought their kids for training and for the matches. We couldn’t have done it without their support. Our Colts Secretary, Loges who worked so hard to arrange extra nets for the training and supported us all the way. He was present at all matches. Last but not least we have to thank every single boy who played the matches. We couldn’t have done it without your commitment and spirit. At times there were hard decisions to be made by the manager on whom to leave out as we could not play all players for all of the matches. Not once did they complain. They worked as a team and it goes to show that a team consisting of no county players can win a Middlesex championship. This was down to team spirit and sheer hard work. They have made us proud and have definitely put MTSSC on the map.