Thursday, November 19, 2009

Match Report: 11/14: vs Wisden CC

With little drizzle and overnight dew and light showers, the non-seasonal clouds brought up a little worry to the Immortals as they hosted Wisden CC over the past weekend. These teams had never met before, and with the game shifting to Washington Park in Mountain View, it was yet another day for some good cricket and more importantly a W on the board.

The toss was won by the Immortals captain, Darshil, and the choice was to promptly bat first on what was to be a batting platter with the moist hardening the pitch quite well. It looked as if it would be a run fiesta. A day when everyone contributed their best in some way or the other the Immortals were on their way with a stomping win.

Immortals batting had never looked so much better with everyone chipping their best as the top order fired the right cylinders from ball one helped with some haywire bowling from Wisden. With the odd extras coming every over, the Immortals were cruising at one poing with 30 runs off 6 overs. A flurry of boundaries from Ronak and Jainip, just added to the total which was well set up by the openers Nirmam and Sanato (Viral) at the top. With some exquisite shots from Batti (Karan SJSU) it looked like 100 were surely up for the grabs off the 20 overs. But with some well disciplined bowling towards the end by Wisden, restricted the Immortals bandwagon on 89 runs for the loss of just 5 wickets.

If the batting cage was happy about their performances, the bowlers of Immortals were not to be left behind. I wonder if someone has ever known, observed or recorded the kind of bowling we inflict upon the opponents, such a way, that this time there were 5 ducks in the Wisden CC batting card. If we look back upon the previous scorecards I think they speak up for themselves as to how accurate, ferrocious, aggressive yet well balanced the Immortals bowling aspect is. All the bowlers got their piece of the meat here and there, as the Wisden CC batting just collapsed like a deck of cards with no one showing determination to occupy the crease.

With only one batsman of Wisden CC reaching double figures, the game was well over at the 10 over break, but to add to the misery of their batsman and to haunt them, one highlight that stood out was Jaishal's only over that he bowled. The first ball, was well knicked and a fantastic catch was held by the keeper Ronak. The second ball (Jaishal did mention on the fly that the batsman is not at all showing any stumps), and somehow he managed to uproot his furniture as the batsman was yorked and the bails flew by the keeper. Third ball - which meant Jaishal was on a hattrick, and the captain rightly closed in all the fielders to pressurize the batsman, and a little wide and the batsman thought of coming down the crease to drive it, only to fall short of his crease, as the ball went past him and Ronak made no mistake in flicking the bails to stump him out. What a over !!! It was the final nail in the coffin as Wisden CC were wrapped up for 35.


The Immortals now are second in their group right behind Mavericks at 10 points. With yet another win against the upcoming game against GSCC, the Immortals are surely on their way to qualify for the Platinum/Gold.

Go Immortals


Thursday, November 12, 2009

Match Report: 11/08: vs Warriors

Two teams filled with brothers of the same neighbourhood, most of them coming from the same locality back in India with almost a major chunk speaking the same language, this clash of the Immortals vs Warriors was going to be exciting right from the beginning till the end. The Immortals paid a visit to the Warriors home ground in South San Jose, only to dent their opposition's debut season, and above all and more importantly get back to winning terms with some convincing cricket. With already a tie and a loss on their minds, it was a self-built pressure on the clads in the Immortals camp, the pressure of not losing, but delivering and winning this important game.

The Immortals won the toss, and once again choose to bat first on hostile conditions, with a belief of reviving the batting maestros and on the way get a chance to witness some fireworks. The start was quite solid, a bit shaky and timid in the beginning but catching up the pace as the match progressed. For one more fine day, Nirmam's batting talent and ability to play long innings was at display as he scored 30 odd runs with just 1 hit to the fence, and more importantly dropped anchor to stay until the 17-18th over of the Immortals batting innings. The rest of the batsman once again failed to deliver as they fell down like bowling pins in and around Nirmam's laid out innings. The result, Immortals managed to score a decent 68 runs on the board facing comparatively some fresh, new, naive and inexperienced bowlers, which could have been exploited well.

With Dhruval Shah, a good bat in the business, someone who had two half centuries to his name coming into this game, and someone known for his flurry of stroke play, the Warriors looked confident enough to chase the total easily. But what they might not have experienced before was the great bowling display from some of the league's premier bowlers from the Immortals. The 10 over break said it all and summed it all up. Warriors were reeling and licking their wounds as they found themselves shattered at 22 runs for the loss of 7 wickets at the break. Their top 7 batsmen had failed as a team, and no one even managed to cross 5 runs with Dhruval out for 1. This meant someone else would have to take the responsibility and play a macho innings to give the Warriors some glimpse of hope if they had any intention of winning this bout.

This turned out to be Sanket, their # 8 batsman, who surprisingly came so low down the order once that we all witnessed his batting display. Crawling at 22 for 7, Sanket, played his natural game, hit some exquisite strokes and managed to remain not out on 30 runs, as the opposite end did not give him support as he was inching closer to the winning target. With 10 runs needed of every over for the last 4 overs or so, it seemed the game was favoring the Immortals, but with Sanket on the crease things could go haywire. But then, the Immortals boasts of some great talented group of bowlers that they carry, who not only managed to put the brakes on the run chase, but also managed to bowl the Warriors out for 56.


A much deserved victory for the Immortals, and a relief to see a "W" on the charts. The Immortals had come together as a unit, as a team who even though defending a low total, managed to rattle the opposition with some fierce spells of bowling and some great work in the field. Catches were held to perfection, crucial boundaries and runs were saved with precision, and it seemed the game was quite one sided at the end.

This important victory shall bring back the confidence that the Immortals needed to romp ahead and march past the other opponents. With 50 games to their names, the Immortals achieved yet another milestone as a team.

The Immortals look forward to celebrate their home coming in Cupertino on their home ground with many more victories, as they now host 3 games, with next up being Wisden CC.

Go Immortals !

Friday, November 6, 2009

Match Report: 10/31: vs Cougars

How many times have we seen teams and certain individuals run up against a dead block and end up sulking about the bad day they had. Something similar happened to the entire team of Immortals as they hosted Cougars this past weekend. With already the ground issue turning up a pain in the neck, the game was not played on the Immortals regular happy hunting ground Cupertino Middle School but was shifted to Washington Park in Mountain View. Some good, some bad memories were a distant reach as Immortals looked forward to register a convincing win since their last two encounters against Cougars had ended on a happy note for them. But alas, it was not to be as Immortals not only cursed their own approach to the game but were left dented in all aspects.

To start with the batting, Immortals went up first with Nirmam and Sanato (Viral) once again doing the honors. With just 2 runs on the board, the first blow struck as Viral got out to a marvellous diving catch at point and with Karan (SJSU) too falling at a team score of 13, it was left to Ronak and Nirmam to slow the game down. They succeded to some extent and managed to get the team past the 10 over break with the score board reading 28 runs for the loss of 2 wickets.

But then with some deja vu feeling once again Nirmam got out the first ball after the break and it seemed that opened up the gates for Cougars to boil down the Immortals middle order. And what was to come was a once in a life time seen event where Immortals somehow managed to break the shackles but not on the scoreboard but that of the stumps and the wickets, as the middle order was torn apart by some disciplined bowling from the opposition, but more of due to the self killing by the batsmen. Ronak, Aditya and Darshil the anchors of the batting line up saw themselve pushed on the backfoot as the Cougars tightened the screws from all aspects.

A flurry of wickets were thrown as the Immortals lost 5 wickets in the space of a measley 3 runs. Some messy calling, and some bad shots saw the Immortals choking up at 31 runs losing 7 wickets. Valuable runs and valuable time spent at the crease by the next 4 batsman saw the Immortals get past a decent 50 runs on the board but deep down it meant that they would have to fight harder to contain the opposition. Immortals had done it in the past, and it meant repeating this feat one more time.

If the batting had let us down, the bowling was something the Immortals had always had pride in. With some great performers all around in the bowling department, it meant a tough day for the Cougars with the chase of 52 runs for a win. But then, as fate always loves to play it's sweet part in our destiny, the umpires from Kings were not only bad in judgements but they had plenty of false attitude to carry on their shoulders with one of them even threatening to shutdown the game and with fireworks already flying since early morning the umpires calls made it even more frustrating for the Immortals.

Nevertheless, with some great display of bowling by everyone, Bhupesh and Nirmam who opened up the bowling stints, were right on target, and with Darshil, Jaishal and Karan (SJSU) doing their part in the middle, every effort was made to put the batsman in a pressure situation. With Aditya bowling his 4 overs in tandem, and yielding only 5 runs, the nail biting habits were out for anyone who was watching the game closely. The Immortals took the Cougars right till the last over which by itself speaks about the valiant effort by the bowling department as it was not to be an easy win for the Cougars who finally rode home with 5 balls to spare.

What hurt us the most, and might have let us down was the fielding and catching arenas where (I might be wrong on this) but approximately 5-6 catches were dropped with some sloppy work in the field too. Some sitters were dropped and some dolly chances were not converted to the Immortals advantage but having said that, not to pin point fingers at anyone, the entire team felt responsible for this loss be it the batting, fielding or to some extent the bowling aspects. On the whole it was a bad day by all means and other than the fact that the game went till the 19th over, there was nothing much left to take back home but to shred this loss and focus on the next big game coming up. It was just a bad dream and the confidence level needs to rise up and up outright for the camp.


The Immortals have yet to register a convincing win in the Fall Open yet, with the first game being a tie due to some herculean efforts and the next one turning out to be something of similar sorts but resulting into a loss. With Warriors up next, the Immortals need to be, should be and will be back in action with some stunning performances.

Go Immortals

If you believe you can, you will !!!