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Thrilling win for Shivaji Park Gymkhana in Kanga League

After being bowled out for a mere 88 runs in the first innings, SPG came back to dismiss Parel Sporting for 76. Shivaji Park Gymkhana’s Onkar Gurav said: “With overnight showers, it was a typical Kanga League wicket. Given the quality of spinners in our bowling department, we always believed that 88 is a match winning total.”

Mairaj Khan
Shivaji Park Gymkhana’s Mairaj Khan during the Kanga League match at Elphinstone Cricket Club in Azad Maidan yesterday. Pics/Shadab Khan

It indeed turned out to be a spinners affairs with all 10 wickets going to the tweakers. Twenty-year-old off-spinner Mairaj Khan picked up four wickets for 14 runs in his 12-over spell.

He has been an integral part of the SPG bowling unit for the past four years. “I just concentrated on bowling at the stumps and made the batsmen play as much as possible.” This strategy seemed to have worked well for him as he got three Parel Sporting batsmen bowled.

Dinar Gaonkar

Khan was well supported by left arm spinner Dinar Gaonkar, who picked up four wickets to return with figures of 4 for 18 in 15 overs. Playing in the ‘A’ division for the past three years for Shivaji Park Gymkhana, Gaonkar said: “I am very fortunate to be a part of the SPG team.

Even with the rains all over Mumbai, we were very lucky to practice for a week before this tournament. This was possible only due to the efforts of our support staff.” Fellow left-arm spinner Dhrumil Matkar claimed two wickets.

Ankeet Mithawala’s five wickets in vain
At Fort Vijay Cricket Club (Azad Maidan), the hosts, after being bundled out for 115 in the first innings, came up with a determined effort, but that was not enough to stop MIG Cricket Club from winning on the first innings.

Ankeet Mithawala

Fort Vijay came out to field with a specific plan of picking up quick wickets and succeed in picking up two early wickets. However, a steady partnership between Kevin Almeida (37) and Prashant Naik (30) got MIG back in the match.

Fort Vijay’s real star was left-arm spinner Ankeet Mithawala, who claimed 5 for 29 in his nine overs. His effort threatened to take the game away from MIG, who lost eight wickets before getting their vital lead. “I have mixed feelings. I would have loved to help my team get over the line,” he said.

Due to overnight showers, the Payyade SC vs Victory Cricket Club and National CC vs Greater Mumbai Police SC games were called off. 

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