CATALUYNA CC TOUR OF MOROCCO
The Morocco tour started on the 4th of February in the town of Sale. This was the second tour taken by a mainland Spanish club to Morocco as Barcelona CC had previously toured the country in the 1990’s
Catalunya Cricket Club proved to be great ambassadors for Cricket España and came back home from the tour unbeaten.
The first match of the tour was against the club side Morocaine in a Twenty20 contest. Cataluyna won the toss and batted first scoring a respectable total of 143 for 7 off their allocated overs. Nissar, batting at number four was the mainstream of the tourists score, contributing a quick fire 50 for the first half century of the tour.
In reply the home side got off to a slow start and in losing 3 quick wickets they never really threatened to surpass the Cataluyna total. Kulwant was the pick of the bowlers taking 3 wickets for 9 runs off 4 overs. However his performance was nearly equalled by Farhat who bagged 3 for 14 off 4 overs and with the 16 runs he had scored when batting, he edged the Man of the Match award. Cataluyna won this match easily.but praise must go to the Moroccan team for their effort, that produced some outstanding fielding and bowling against good opposition.
The second tour match saw the local club Sale entertain Cataluyna in a 40 over game. Again the “Cats” won the toss and elected to bat. This decision looked questionable when they lost their first three batsmen for low scores, but the strength and depth of the team enabled a middle order recovery.Kulwant Singh, Asif, Mohrram and Nissar Ahmed all made healthy contributions to ensure the visitors posted a good total of 243 for 8 off their 40 overs.
Yet again the Moroccan team found the Catalans bowling too hot to handle and struggled to post a good total. Spanish international, Armaghan bowled five economical overs for only 11 runs. Farook, Kulwant and Farhat all returned good figures and chipped in with wickets,The home side were finally bowled out in the 28th over for only 87 with Boutcher (13) and Bpathy (27) scoring nearly half of their sides runs. Man of the match was Nissar Ahmed as the “Cats” made it two wins out of two.
The last match of the tour was against the Moroccan National side. This was the first time in two years that Morocco had played a touring team and the match was watched by the respective ambassadors of the United Kingdom, Bangladesh and South Africa, as well as some local heads of sport.
A sizeable side came out to cheer the locals but Cataluyna won the toss for the third time in a row and again chose to bat. A fine opening stand between Farhat and Sajid gave the visitors a great start as they put on over 50 for the first wicket..With the loss of the first wicket the Catalans went into freefall and had a mini-collapse losing 3 quick wickets, including the Spanish national wicket-keeper Shafique Ali for a duck. Once again, as in the previous game, the middle order rescued the visitors to see them finally finish with a score of 233 for 8 off 40 overs.
The Morrocans in reply struggled to cope with the Catalan bowling attack and scored slowly much to the dismay of the home crowd. Unfortunately, bad light interrupted the proceedings and the game was called off by the umpires early with the home team well behind the scoring rate.
The Catalans were awarded the game by the umpires to complete an unbeaten tour of the North African country.
Cataluyna CC and Cricket Espana would like to thank everyone who made the tour possible, the locals for their warm hospitality and George Wambeek
MOROCCO TOUR 2010
Azid Ali Gondal
Asif Zia Mughal