By Balbir Singh
NAPA (CALIFORNIA) : The Napa Valley Cricket Club (NVCC) hosted their first game against a newly formed social cricket team from San Francisco recently. Dubbed the “Kabootars” the team who all work at Twitter are newly formed in 2015 and are looking to play more social cricket in the Bay Area. For such a new team who don’t play regularly they certainly showed their potential running out comfortable winners in the end beating NVCC by 58 runs having posted 202 in their 35 overs.
NVCC captain for the day and club president Phil Bourke won the all-important toss on a hot Calistoga day and decided to insert the Kabootars (Hindi for Pigeon) in to bat. Bourke was rewarded for this decision with two wickets inside three overs both for off-spinner Kiranpreet Singh who found plenty of turn on the Calistoga pitch. Singh was ably supported by fellow opener New Zealander, Tony Parrish, whose medium-fast pace had the Kabootars batsmen pushed back in their crease and unable to get his consistent line and length balls past a tight inner cordon of fielders.
Gus Cleland added to the Kabootars woes with a third wicket for the NVCC in the 10th over to leave them on 28 runs and relying on their middle order to salvage the game. And the Kabootars middle order did just that with three consecutively strong partnerships – 4th wicket 67 runs – 5th wicket 48 – 6th wicket 58.
The anchor for all three of these partnerships was young batsman Kailash whose score of 98 included seven 4’s and five 6’s. NVCC’s Bourke mixed up his bowling through this period but found no success despite using a total of eight bowlers. The only bright spot for NVCC in the field was the return of Singh in the “death overs” as he took three wickets in the final over, including that of Kailash, to notch up his first “5 for” - five wickets in one inning – and the NVCC’s second such milestone this season.
With lunch from Calmart for both the NVCC and Kabootars team and their guests behind them NVCC set out to chase down the gettable target of 203 to win. However as we’ve seen in previous NVCC games they failed to build any partnerships through their innings and no one batsman stood out as making a substantial contribution to the chase. Australian Tim Irwin (31 runs off 24 balls) top scored for NVCC and with only four other batsmen – Pete Carson (17 off 34), Kiranpreet Singh (16 off 24), Hardeep Takhar (15 off 25) and Abhijit Adhye (11 off 20) – getting into double figures NVCC ran out of batsmen’s in the 32nd over with their score at 144 runs.
After the match, NVCC captain for the day and club president Phil Bourke presented the Clos du Val Man of the Match award to Twitter’s Kailash for his contribution to the game with the bat.
“It was a great game for our first here in the Napa Valley” said the Twitter Kabootars captain Saurabh Verma “and we look forward to coming here and playing again. The Napa Valley club have been incredibly hospitable not just to our team but to the many family and friends who came too and we are very appreciative of that” continued Verma “We played well with both bat and ball today and look forward to more cricketing encounters here in the Napa Valley”.
“Today’s game was an example of the reach of cricket” said NVCC vice-president Andrew Healy “with a team from one of the top social media companies coming to the Napa Valley to play a game that we all love” continued Healy who handles game scheduling for the NVCC “Our schedule for 2015 has brought, and will bring in, teams from San Francisco, the South Bay, Marin, Sacramento and a touring team from Philadelphia in October. It doesn’t get much better for cricket lovers than playing the game they love in the Napa Valley!”
Sunday 19th July, 2015 – Napa Valley CC vs. Twitter Kabootars at The Fairgrounds, Calistoga
Napa Valley CC 144 all out lost to Twitter Kabootars by 58 runs. (35 over game / 11 batting)
Napa Valley CC Batting – Tin Irwin 31 runs off 24 balls (5 x 4, 1 x 6), Peter Carson 17 off 34 (1 x 4), Kiranpreet Singh 16 off 24 (1 x 4, 1 x 6).
Napa Valley CC Bowling – Kiranpreet Singh 5 wickets for 16 runs off 7 overs including 1 maiden, Gus Cleland 1 for 26 off 3, Arjun Pandya 0 for 17 off 5).