Monday, February 26, 2024

Shillong Cricket League back for ‘unfinished business’


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SHILLONG, Jan 24: At first it was the anti-CAA agitation, then the COVID-19 pandemic that abruptly halted the Shillong Cricket League season 2019-20. Nonetheless, the long wait finally ended today when the Shillong Cricket Association (SCA) resumed the unfinished season.
The season restarted with Rangkynsai Sports Club taking on Sunrise Cricket Club in the first semi-finals of the unfinished First Division season. The match was a humdinger – a befitting contest to mark the return of cricket in the city.
Rangkynsai won the toss and put the Sunrise to bat. The Sunrise batsmen had a steady start. Both the openers, Krishna Chettri (39) and Bishnu Mohato (15), shrugged off signs of rustiness and played their shots. Krishna in particular played some attractive shots, the highlight being his pull shot for a six of the Rangkynsai skipper, Sanjay Lyngdoh (3/37).
The openers, however, could not carry on the momentum. The Sunrise batting collapsed and the team ended up with a score of 137 in 34.2 overs. The wrecker-in-chief for Rankynshai was Makie Blah with figures of 4/30.
In response, the Rangkynsai openers were off to a flyer. Pankaj Yadav (32), who opened the innings with Pynhun Kharmalki (30), butchered the Sunrise bowling.
Aryan Bora, a Meghalaya state player, was introduced to curb the run rate. He was at his economical best. By far he looked the most lethal bowler in the Sunrise arsenal. He eventually ended the match with figures of 3/17.
Rangkynsai seemed poised for an easy win, but a late batting collapse gave them a scare. Pynhun, who was compared to Cheteshwar Pujara batting in Australia, held one end while wickets tumbled. Solu Momin (2/6) got Pynhun trapped in front of the wickets and gave Sunrise a glimpse of victory.
However, cool heads and brave shot making prevailed. Mickey Lyngdoh (11) hit two boundaries to seal the match in Rangkynsai’s favour and they won the match by 2 wickets.
Rangkynsai await the winner of the other semi-finals which is between Nongmensong CC and MLP on January 25. The finals will be held on January 27 at the Polo cricket ground.


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