Following the bonfires and fireworks of Friday night, we turned up to the baseball ground in Montjuïc on a scorching Sant Joan afternoon for our league fixture against old friends Badalona CC. Umer Razi lost the toss with the one umpire that had turned up on time, and we were put in to bat in front of a probable record home crowd that reached double figures(!).
Umer opened with himself alongside Burhan Ejaz and the two built a very solid partnership. They were both clearly struggling with the heat though as there were quite a few runs turned down and a few others lazily trotted down to the other end! They reached the 10 overs drinks break at 75/0, aided by a few two-run wides and a dropped catch for each along the way! With a solid base built, they agreed to accelerate the innings, although Burhan was dismissed first ball after drinks, hitting the ball straight back to the bowler. Razball came into effect and Shriram Bhosale was sent in, much higher up the order than normal, to continue that acceleration – and it certainly worked! He would eventually bring up his half century off 28 balls on the way to 55*. Umer contributed a well-constructed 49 before being stumped by former BICC player Nadim Aseq as he looked to get to his personal landmark. In the final over, Maroof Shaikh came in and whacked 10 off just three balls to get us to a total of 186/3.
In reply, our now usual opening partnership of Lauren Pamenter (now definitely in her last game for the club in her current spell in Barcelona – unlike last week, which was definitely her last game for us for a while!) and Sam Phillipps took the new ball. Lauren struggled to find her rhythm in the first over but would help dry up the runs over the rest of the powerplay. Off just the eighth ball, there was a mix-up between the batters and Umer smartly ran Mahdi Al out from mid-off and we were on the board. Sam claimed two cheap wickets in his second and third overs either side of a dropped catch that really put the cat amongst the pigeons. Sam was replaced by Zeeshan Dildar who immediately started with a wicket maiden as his pace proved too much for Haseeb Ullah. Leandro Español also came in to the attack and almost immediately another chance went abegging after a mix up between himself and Shriram. Opener Maaz Ahmed and Tahla Islam reached drinks at 63/4, aided even more by some extras than we had been. Despite some good bowling from Joseph Danam and Vishesh Gajjar in the middle overs, their sixth-wicket partnership reached a slightly worrying 68 before Shriram, not content with a first BICC 50 and a catch, claimed the wicket of Tahla caught and bowled. This started another collapse as Badalona went from 114/4 to 129/8, with a wicket for Vishesh, another for Shriram and a run-out by Zeeshan. Nadim was run out by Shriram (yes, him again) in the final over and, after the number 11 didn’t come out for some reason, the game was done two balls early!