Day one of the National finals proved to be a good one for Pak-I-Care CC, a mixed effort by Costa Del Sol and a poor day at the office for Levante CC.
The first match of the finals pitted the ECCL Champions (Levante) against the Southern champions (Costa Del Sol CC). Levante batted first and made 101 for 5. Opener Waqas hit 30 and Zain Elani and Rameez contributed at the end of their ten over innings with 16 not out and Rameez with 30 not out respectively to ensure the Valencia based side scraped into three figures.
In reply CDS made the 102 required with one ball to spare. Dylan Henshaw top scored with a credible half century that included four consecutive fours of the bowling of Tariq and Lee Rimmer hit a nice cameo late on that consisted of three consecutive sixes off the bowling of the Levante skipper Zain Elani.
Those 34 runs in just seven balls were instrumental in giving CDS the victory. It was left to Richard Lake and the skipper A J Cromb to score the five required off the final over. The penultimate ball Cromb stroked for four to make the CDS total 104 for 3 and give the points to the Southern club.
Match two saw Levante back in action again and the opportunity to put points on the board against the Cataluyna champions Pak-I-Care. The Barcelona based club won the toss and elected to bat, opening with Spanish internationals Muhammad Babar and Muhammad Ihsan.Ihsan went cheaply but Babar hit 23 off just 11 balls. However, the star of the Cataluyna batting this time round was Sazil who hit a sparkling 48 not out in an innings that had 4 x sixes and 4 x fours. The total finshed on 118 for five.
Waqas again played a good innings, hitting 45 but his team mates failed to support him well enough and Levante fell 14 runs short of the final total. Sikander bagged two wickets for 26 for the Catalans.
Match three pitched the two unbeaten clubs from day one together. Costa Del Sol won the toss and fielded first.Both Babar and Ihsan came to the party, and scored 69 and 32 respectively. With Sikander adding 21 not out at the end they finished their innings on 136 for two. Young Jamie Riley followed up his economical bowling against Levante (1 for 15) with another fine spell that included the wicket of Ihsan. He finished his two over spell with figures of onev for 16 against Pak-I-Care.
CDS struggled to chase down the competitive total and ended on 78 for 7. Onlñy Richard Lake (34) managed double figures as the Catalans scored a convincing victory to take two wins from two and record an healthy net run rate.
Saturday is a rest day, with Ibiza starting their campaign on Sunday with consecutive matches against the three clubs. The top two in the group stage will contest the National Final starting at 15.30 hours. The first match Sunday starts at 9.30 am. Entrance is free and food and drink are available from the club bar/pavillion.