Rod Lyall 13/05/19
Three more centuries in the second round of Topklasse matches on Saturday brought the total to six in nine games, suggesting that there may be a vintage season for batsmen in prospect.
The most encouraging from a Dutch point of view was Shirase Rasool’s maiden hundred for ACC against Quick Haag, while the most remarkable was perhaps Rupert Young’s in reply. The most predictable was that by Taruwar Kohli for Dosti United against HCC although, like Young’s, it proved to be in a losing cause.
Three sides made it two out of two on Saturday, with ACC the initial leaders on net run rate, followed by Excelsior ’20 and HBS Craeyenhout.
In the only match between first-round winners, Excelsior firmly deflated Voorburg’s balloon, beating the promoted side by seven wickets at Westvliet.
Electing to bat first, Voorburg appeared to be coasting at the first drinks break, having reached 82 for two and with last week’s centurion Matt Smit well set on 44.
But then Excelsior skipper Tom Heggelman turned from seam to spin, and in eight overs of complete mayhem the home side subsided to 94 for seven.
Umar Baker collected three of those wickets, going on to clean up the innings and finish with six for 46, but it was Lorenzo Ingram who removed the dangerous Smit, who had added just two more before he had the misfortune to glove a delivery which deflected from his pad as he tried to sweep, into the hands of Branton Parchment, lurking at slip.
There was some late resistance from Brandon Glover and Yasir Hamid, but in a disappointingly irresolute effort overall Voorburg were dismissed for 144.
Glover and Clayton Floyd looked dangerous when Excelsior replied, but a single wicket for the former was their only reward. Without ever seeming really comfortable Tim Etman played a crucial innings for his side, helped by a couple of missed chances, and in partnerships with Ingram – eventually forced to retire hurt after taking one in the ribs from Viv Kingma – and Parchment he steered them towards the win.
He eventually fell to a catch at slip by Tom de Grooth after Glover returned, but he had made 81 and only six were now needed, Joost Kroesen and Heggelman finishing the job with more than 16 overs remaining.
On the new artificial outfield at Nieuw Hanenburg ACC enhanced their run rate standing with a comprehensive 102-run victory over Quick Haag, built on a second-wicket partnership of 125 between Rehmat Zulfiqar, who made an aggressive 80, and Rasool.
The youngster has served a long apprenticeship, but in following up his fifty last week with an unbeaten 117 he reaped the reward for the hard work he has reportedly been doing over the winter.
Jean Marais contributed a quick 32, and ACC closed on 290 for seven.
Quick were soon in trouble with Bob van Gigch, Lesley Stokkers and Geert Maarten Mol all dismissed cheaply, but Young, after a cautious start, suddenly unleashed an extraordinary attack on the ACC bowlers, cracking six sixes in five overs and racing from 27 to 64.
Three more followed before he eventually fell to Aryan Kumar for 115, made at better than a run a ball, and Quick were all out for 188, with Brady Barends, Anis Raza, Devanchu Arya and Shreyas Potdar collecting a brace of wickets apiece.
HBS were also relatively untroubled in maintaining their unbeaten record, with a 72-run victory over Sparta 1888 at Sportpark Bermweg.
They got off to another flying start with an opening stand of 97 inside 17 overs, 74 coming from the bat of Tobias Visée, who faced just 43 deliveries and smashed ten fours and three sixes.
His partner, Zac Elkin, was much more circumspect, taking 117 balls to make his 58, but with Sharn Gomes and Navjit Singh going cheaply and Wesley Barresi making only 27, it took a brisk 31 from Zak Gibson to get the total up to 242.
Max Hoornweg and Usman Saleem claimed three wickets each, for 41 and 35 respectively.
Wessel Coster and Berend Westdijk, sharing the new ball, struck back for HBS, and at 39 for three Sparta were soon in trouble.
As they had against Voorburg, Mudassar Bukhari (35) and Atse Buurman (27) leant some solidity to the middle order, but once Westdijk had removed Bukhari and Barresi had accounted for Buurman the Sparta reply fell away, only skipper Joost Martijn Snoep’s unbeaten 24 enabling them to reach 170.
Westdijk finished with three for 20, with the spinners Julian de Mey and Barresi collecting a couple of wickets each.
The most exciting match of the day saw HCC snatch a final-over three-wicket victory over Dosti United, half-centuries by Adam Wiffen and Bryce Street enabling them to overhaul Dosti’s 229 for nine with two balls to spare.
Taruwar Kohli’s 108 not out was the highlight of Dosti’s innings, only opener Rahil Ahmed (42) and skipper Vinoo Tewarie (33) offering significant support.
The Amsterdam side were well placed at 140 for two, but once Tewarie had gone they lost their way, and with Hidde Overdijk taking four for 43 it was Kohli’s 126-ball innings which enabled them to set a decent total.
A 93-run stand between Wiffen (50) and Street (63) meant that HCC, too, reached 142 for two, but once they had been removed, by Kuldeep Diwan and Amitose Singh respectively, the home side’s middle order likewise failed to maintain the momentum, and it took hard-hitting cameos by Douwe Walhain and Ali Ahmed Qasim, the former finishing the game off with a winning six, to see their side to victory.