TCC Taped Ball – Winter 2016 – ECC Winners, Gladiators Runners up

ECC won the TCC taped Ball Winter 2016 tournament by defeating Gladiators by 13 runs in a keenly contested final between 6-time finalist and 3 time winners ECC and 6 time finalists and 2-time winner Gladiators. With this win ECC claimed its 4th and 2nd consecutive title. Both ECC and Gladiators made it to the final, through a tough league phase and an even tougher Playoff phase.

On a slightly overcast Saturday morning with a forecast of rain looming to play spoilsport, ECC lost the toss and Gladiators going against their norm of batting first put ECC in to bat. Subhodh the Gladiators captain and Matthew bowled a good couple of overs with Matthew making the first inroads by removing ECC opener George cheaply in the 4th over. Gautam joined Bhaskar in the middle and they went about attacking the Gladiators first change bowlers Ninad and Sandeep scoring more than 8 runs per over in the next 4. Gautam was runout for a quick 26 and at the end of 10 overs ECC were well placed at 68/2, confident that they could get to a total of 140.

After the break the Gladiator bowlers came back strongly by bowling with discipline and as the runs dried down, ECC batsman started to take some risks which resulted in ECC losing a couple of quick wickets. The major blow came when Bhaskar was run out for for a well-made 44. Avinash from ECC made a brisk 16 down the lower order to take ECC to a respectable but under par 121/6 in 20 overs.
With Gladiators coming back strongly and restricting ECC to 121 when they were looking at a score in excess of 140 to chase at the 10 over mark, the game was in balance at the innings break as Gladiators have the batting to chase down 120. ECC though disappointed at not getting 140 were quietly confident on their bowlers to restrict the Gladiators.

Gladiators came out of the blocks galloping as Amit Patel and Sanman took 10 runs of ECC’s Avinash’s first over and were 22 at the end of 3 overs having lost Sanman. Emad joined Amit as ECC’s Kiran and first change bowlers Sankar and Vibhish gave only 8 runs in the next 3 overs restricting Gladiators to 30 /1 after 6 overs. Imad and Amit showed some urgency and scored 13 runs in the next over and 15 more in the next 2 albeit losing the wickets of Amit and Matthew ending up at 58/3 in 10 overs. Both Vibhish and Sankar got a wicket each and at the drinks break the game was evenly poised with Gladiators needing 64 more runs and knowing that they had Ninad and Subhodh their main run scorers in this tournament still to come.

ECC started strongly after the break giving only 11 runs in the next 3 overs while removing the dangerous Emad and Santana, with Gladiators being 69/5 at the end of 13. Subhodh and Amit Shah played sensibly and ran hard to take the score to 86/5 at the end of 15 overs. With 36 runs required in the last 5 overs it was anybody’s game but ECC struck a double blow when Kiran removed Subhodh and then the very next over Vibhish removed Ninad to peg Gladiators to 99/7 at the end of 17. Needing 23 in 3 overs, Amit Shah was run out and in the next over to take the score to 104/8 at the end of 18. Avinash, ECC premier bowler than took the match into his hands and removed Bafna with the first ball and Hamesh with the 4th ball to take ECC to their 2nd consecutive and 4th overall championship.

The game was followed by a well-organized prize distribution ceremony arranged by TCC. Mr. Krishna Kasturi, ex HCL President and secretary of Triggers EC graced the occasion as chief guest. He was lauded for his contribution and support to cricket in Houston. He talked about his passion for youth cricket and encouraged everyone present to support youth cricket. Jagadish Biradar, the organizer of the tournament coordinated the presentation ceremony.

TCC extended thanks and appreciation to Dinesh Kasliwal from Gladiators for his wonderful voluntary service in the scheduling of the tournament.

Mahesh Thandra Ashwinkumar, the captain of Eldridge Cricket Club (ECC) was presented with the championship trophy

Winners ECC with Chief Guest Krishna Kasturi

Winners ECC with chief guest Krishna Kasturi

Subodh Dongare, the captain of Gladiators was presented with the runners up trophy.

Runners up Gladiators with Chief Guest Krishna Kasturi

Runners up Gladiators with chief guest Krishna Kasturi

Man of the match for the finals was Bhaskar Saripella from ECC for his excellent match-winning performance with the bat.

MOM Final Winter 2016

MOM for Final – Bhaskar Saripella

Rajiv Madhavan from Big 12 and Shiva Prasad from HCCC won the Best batsman with 248 and 247 runs respectively.

Best Batsman Winter 2016

Best Batsman Rajiv Madhavan

Sureshkumar Sriram from Houston Panthers won the best bowler with 19 wickets and also the best All-Rounder for making 223 runs along with his 19 wickets. Sai Kiran from Houston Panthers and Pavan Soodireddy from Gen X won the Best Wicket Keeper with 19 catches each for the tournament.

Best Wicket Keeper Winter 2016

Best Wicketkeeper Pavan Soodireddy

Hemanth Kumthekar from HCCC was the tournament’s recipient for the special award for taking a Hat-Trick.
It was ironical that none of the individual awards were won by anyone from the finalist teams, once again proving that in all its glorious uncertainties, Cricket is still a TEAM GAME.

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