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CRICKET ESPANA V CRICKET FINLAND – DAY FOUR

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Day four would decide who would win the initial T-Twenty International series between Spain and Finland.

Evenly poised after Saturday when both teams had won a game each, the deciding contest was set to be played in slightly windier conditions then yesterday´s games.

Christian Munoz-Mills, the Spanish skipper lost the toss for the third time in succession and the Finns had no hesitation in electing to bat first.

The changed opening partnership of Collins and Gallagher looked an inspired decision by the Finnish coaching staff as the pair put on 71 in just shy of ten overs.

tossing

From this platform the hosts would have expected to end their innings on a greater total of 158 for 8. It was only when Hennessy came on and bowled wicket to wicket that the runs dried up for Finland. The Pinatar Pirates all rounder ended up with three wickets for just 27 runs, and he was ably assisted by his club team mate Ravi Panchal, who took two wickets in two balls in the ultimate over.

Spain once again started badly with the bat and at 24 for 3 in the sixth over their were some glum looking faces on the Spanish bench. A fourth wicket partnership of 90 between Ravi Panchal and Kuldeep Karan begin to claw Spain back into the game. Slowly, the required run rate, that peaked at around 11 an over, started to go down as gradually the Spanish pair found boundaries in every over.

Karan finally departed for 38 off 28 balls. Cameos by Munoz-Mills and Paul Hennessy kept the scoreboard ticking at one end whilst Panchal continued to play the innings of the tournament at the other.

Fittingly, Panchal hit the winning run with four balls to spare to send the Spanish contingent into raptures. Another terribly close game that could have gone the way on the Finns, but at the final outcome the Bulls had edged the best of three series.

ravie

After the game Spain were awarded the Bulls v Bears trophy, kindly sponsored by the Cricket España president Juan Carlos Rodriguez. The teams already have in place a reciprocal agreement that Finland will come to Spain next year for another three match series.

Thanks go out to all involved with Cricket Finland and to all the officials (scorers and umpires) for their efforts during the weekend. Also, thanks to the kitchen staff, groundspeople and every single person who worked behind the scenes before and during the matches to make the event such a success. At one point on the livestreaming there were over 7,500 viewers, vindicating the importance and interest of International cricket between two fledgling associate nations.

Once again, many thanks Cricket Finland for your hospitality, and look forward to seeing you next year on Spanish soil. 

dayf

   

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