Sports

‘Underdogs’ Attariya enter DPL final

- Binod Pandey, Dhangadhi

Feb 21, 2019-

CYC Attariya put the underdogs tag behind them by entering the final of the Dhangadhi Premier League (DPL) with an easy 41-run victory over pre-tournament favourites Kathmandu Goldens on Wednesday.

In the first Qualifier at the Fapla Cricket Ground, decent contributions from skipper Dipendra Singh Airee and Sunny Patel steered Attariya to 110-8 in 20 overs. Patel returned to pick up three wickets as Goldens collapsed to 69 all out in 18.3 overs. Attariya will now play the winners of Friday’s second Qualifier match. The final is scheduled for Saturday. In the second Qualifier, Goldens will take on the winners of Thursday’s Eliminator match between Rupandehi Challengers and Mahendranagar United.

Attariya were hardly given an outside chance prior to the start of the tournament after their owners formed the youngest squad with the inclusion of majority of U-19 cricketers. Skipper Airee is the biggest domestic name in the team with Patel and another Indian recruit Jaykishan Kolsawala adding some experience.

But the “underdogs” will now be favourites to claim the title after making short work of Gyanendra Malla’s Goldens, who were once again undone by Attariya spinners. Goldens were bundled out for just 75 runs on Tuesday in their last league game against Attariya and their failure with the bat continued on second straight day, this time in a chase.

Goldens tried out a new opening pair of Anil Kumar Sah and former national team allrounder Mehboob Alam demoting Gaurav Tomar down to the middle order. The experiment failed badly after Sah handed a return catch to Patel for duck and Alam gave a catch to Jitendra Singh Thakuri off Airee for one.

They were soon reduced to 13-3 after spinner Bhuwan Karki had Malla (11) stumped by Kolsawala. Tomar and Ankit Dabas (six) offered a brief resistance with a 26-run fourth wicket stand but a run out of the latter resumed the Goldens collapse. They went on to lose their last seven wickets for just 30 runs.

Man-of-the-match Patel took 3-18 from four overs. Karki and right-arm seamer Kamal Singh Airee also had two scalps apiece. Tomar top scored for Goldens with a 27-ball 26 hitting two sixes and four. Yogendra Singh Karki (11) was their remaining batsman to make runs in double figures.

Earlier, Kolsawala (13) and Shubhendu Pandey started off cautiously with a 26-run first wicket stand before Dabas put Attariya into back foot with two wickets in two deliveries. He first had Kolsawala caught by Nandan Yadav and bowled Rit Gautam for a duck. Airee then shared a crucial 40-run partnership for the third wicket with Pandey (16) before Patel provided the late lift. Airee top scored with a 34-ball 33, hitting five boundaries while Patel struck a 24-ball 28 with two sixes and a four. Surya Tamang also took two wickets—getting rid of both Pandey and Airee in a single over—for Goldens.

Airee said the victory was result of proper execution of their plans. “We found out that the ball was taking quite a good turn so we thought that taking the total close to 120 was going to be defendable. We knew that if we bowl at good areas and continue to not concede runs, the batsmen would throw their wickets. The plan worked for us. The fielding department has also been phenomenal for us,” said Airee.

Malla said his team failed as a batting unit. “It was a challenging score in this pitch but not the winning one. We couldn’t stick to the wicket and play according to our plan. Bowlers did their job and we played positively but the power play didn’t go as expected.”

Summary

CYC Attariaya 110-8 in 20 overs (DS Airee 33, S Patel 28; A Dabas 2-11, S Tamang 2-14) beat Kathmandu Goldens 69 in 18.3 overs (G Tomar 26, YS Karki 11; S Patel 3-18, B Karki 2-12, K Airee 2-13) by 41 runs to enter the final

Man-of-the-match: S Patel

Published: 21-02-2019 09:46

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