National Players star in Domestic Cricket as Premier League gets underway.
A sunny Mid-Autumn long weekend saw the Hong Kong domestic cricket season start with a flourish of willow. Hong Kong’s national players, including Babar Hayat and Tanveer Ahmad, all performed well for their clubs to show how they have improved with a summer of training and international cricket.
Premier League 1-Day
Little Sai Wan v Pakistan Association
In the season opener for the Premier League, Little Sai Wan (DLSW) defeated Pakistan Association (PACC) with nine wickets to spare.
Batting first, PACC was all out with 120 runs, led by Balal Muhammad (31) and Ahsan Abbasi Ali (26).
DLSW’s Hong Kong spinner Nadeem Ahmed (2/10) chipped in with two wickets, while Niaz Ali (3/30) and Mudassar Hussain (3/11) contributed to keep PACC’s batting in check and deliver a very makable target.
DLSW’s response was led by Hong Kong Captain Babar Hayat, who scored the season’s first century with exactly 100 runs off 48 balls. It only took 15 and a half overs for DLSW to take their opening victory of the season.
Kowloon Cricket Club v Hong Kong Cricket Club
In the second Premier League match of the day, Kowloon Cricket Club beat Hong Kong Cricket Club in Wong Nai Chung Gap by 7 wickets.
HKCC’s Courtney Kruger scored 45 off 44 balls to lead the team, while James Redmayne added 34 runs as KCC’s Hong Kong bowlers Waqas Barkat (3/23) and Tanveer Ahmad (3/43) limited HKCC to 151 all out.
KCC’s chase was opened by Hong Kong youngsters Aizaz Khan (33 off 35) and Ninad Shah (11). Former Hong Kong skipper Jamie Atkinson’s 63 and Waqas Barkat’s 33 fast-forwarded the chase and brought the away victory at the 27th over.
HKCC’s Isaac Poole took three wickets for 34 runs.
Championship League Division A
KCC Saracens v KCC Crusaders
In the Kowloon Cricket Club derby, the Saracens beat the Crusaders behind two century-makers.
Batting first, Saracens’ opener and Hong Kong player Chris Carter scored 102 runs off 77 balls. Sunny Bhimsaria also knocked 102 runs. Deepinder Singh added 31 to bring the total to a massive 265/5.
Aditya Kanthan was the best bowler for the Crusaders with 3/32. He was also the highest scorer during their chase with 33 runs. Damian Kelleher added 22 runs but it was not enough. They finished the innings with 136/8.
Taipan Sky Warriors v HKCC Gap Ramblers
Hong Kong Cricket Club Gap Ramblers started their title defence by beating Taipan Sky Warriors at home with six wickets to spare.
Sky Warriors batted first and were all out for 145. Gap Ramblers’ Satyendra Singh was the top bowler with 3/15, while Tom Ingram and Charles McInerney each took two wickets.
In response, the middle-order batsmen for the Gap Ramblers led the charge. Stuart Tohill scored 44 off 45 balls, while Isaac Poole added an efficient 43 off 23 balls to the victory.
HKCC Nomads v KCC Tartars
The Hong Kong Cricket Club Nomads beat the Kowloon Cricket Club Tartars in a closely contested match.
The Tartars batted first and scored one run short of 200. Former Hong Kong Captain Najeeb Amar scored 58 off 47 balls, while Muhammad Khan added a half century. They batted through their innings with 199/8. Daljeet Singh of the Nomads took three wickets while S Bhojwani took two.
Nomads’ opener S Ayer led the chase with 79 off 62 balls before being caught out in the 21st over. They were at 113/2. D Singh scored 61 to bring the total within reach, with 190/4 in the 32nd over. A Claire and C White finished the chase with nine balls left in the game.
HKCC Witherers v KCC Crusaders
Hong Kong Cricket Club Witherers won by 25 runs at home against Kowloon Cricket Club Crusaders.
Witherers batted first and provided a balanced team effort. Four batsmen reached double figures, including M Ashton (44), J Warby (43), T Whisker (39*) and L Ginnivan (21). 181 was their total. Crusaders’ Aditya Kanthan continued his good form from Saturday with 2/33. Ruan DeBruin bowled two for 43.
Crusaders’ Damian Kelleher (39) and Dylan Dearing (38) gave the Crusaders a good chance of victory, but their teammates did not do enough to do that. Witherers’ Tim Whisker took four wickets for 40 runs in seven overs.
Championship League Division B
Pioneers CC v University of Hong Kong Cricket Club
The University of Hong Kong Cricket Club beat Pioneers comfortably to get two wins in a row.
Pioneers chose to bat first but they did not perform well. They could only score 23 runs all out. Six HKU bowlers took one wicket each.
In response, HKU only needed 14 balls to get the victory.
DLSW Sarjan v Centaurs Cricket Club
Little Sai Wan Sarjan beat Centaurs Cricket Club by a massive 130 runs, behind Aftab Hussain’s century.
Batting first, Sarjan’s opener Aftab Hussain only needed 73 balls to reach 105 runs, while his opening partner Haseeb Muhammad scored 50. Haroon Arshad added another 80 to help Sarjan reached 279.
Centaurs’ opening batsman G Raj started the chase with 47 runs. Rizwan Masood (38) and Keith Frith (35*) tried close the gap, but the target was proved to be too high.
Sarjan’s Saqib Mahmood was the bowler of the match with 2/18 in seven overs.
Additional reporting and photo: HK Cricket Association