Harris Shield Final: Al Barkaat boys, coaches toil as matches clash

Jan 09, 2019, 07:57 IST | Rohan Koli

Yesterday, members of the team's coaching staff travelled to and fro, between Bombay Gymkhana and Oval Maidan, to keep a tab on what was unfolding at the other match

Harris Shield Final: Al Barkaat boys, coaches toil as matches clash
Al Barkaat's Saumil Malandkar yesterday. Pic/Suresh Karkera

Riding on a century by Saumil Malandkar, defending champions Al Barkaat MMI (Kurla) ended Day One of the three-day Mumbai Schools Sports Association-organised U-16 Harris Shield final against IES New English (Bandra) on 253 for five at Bombay Gymkhana yesterday.

But it was a tough day for Al Barkaat's coaches, who struggled as they also tried to keep track of their school's U-14 Giles Shield match against Anjuman I Islam (CST) which was in progress at the Oval Maidan.

Yesterday, members of the team's coaching staff travelled to and fro, between Bombay Gymkhana and Oval Maidan, to keep a tab on what was unfolding at the other match. Batting first, Al Barkaat were well placed at 70 for one in the first 90 minutes. Immediately, one of the coaches went over to Oval Maidan which is around 500 metres away. By the time he returned, his U-16 team were reeling at 73 for 4 at lunch.

When mid-day visited Oval Maidan we found that the U-14 boys were accompanied by one of the school's groundstaff, Shankar Jaiswar. "Unfortunately, our school has to play two matches at the same time. It's difficult to focus. Since our U-16 boys are playing the final, the coach has to be there as that's a bigger match. It's not easy to play without the presence of the coach, but fortunately the boys have put up a good show today," Jaiswar told mid-day after Al Barkaat beat Anjuman by virtue of a first innings lead in the two-day Giles Shield Group B match, thanks mainly to skipper Tushar Singh's knock of 132.

Batting first, the Anjuman lads were bowled out for 177 on Monday. Yesterday, in reply, the Kurla school declared at 321 for 5. The CST school were reduced to 70 for 6 at close of play. Centurion Tushar was batting at the Oval but his mind was on the Harris Shield final. "I was keen to watch the final, but our Giles Shield matches are clashing. Today, my teammates kept updating me with the scores," he said. Al Barkaat next face Don Bosco (Matunga) tomorrow.

Meanwhile, at Bombay Gym, Saumil (176-ball 111) and Harshvardhan Pandey (66 not out) put on a 180-run stand for the fifth wicket to get the Kurla school back on track with 253-5 before the former was dismissed off the last ball of the day.

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