Punjab, HBS and Voorburg march on

Rod Lyall 02/05/22

Three sides – Punjab and HBS in Group A and Voorburg in Group B – maintained their unbeaten records on Sunday, and have now taken a significant stride towards the Championship group, while after suffering a third consecutive defeat Dosti, ACC and Kampong seem likely to be facing a battle against relegation.

Of the three leaders HBS Craeyenhout had the greatest difficulty in making sure of the points against Sparta 1888 in a game of fluctuating fortunes at Sportpark Bermweg.

After winning the toss and electing to bat the Crows found themselves 1 for two after seven legal deliveries, Julian de Mey having been bowled by Ahsan Malik off the second ball and the previous day’s centurion, Tobias Visée, removed by Mudassar Bukhari off the first ball of the second over.

Tayo Walbrugh (56) and Gavin Kaplan (40) fought back with a third-wicket stand of 103, but when both were dismissed by Joost Martijn Snoep a collapse followed, as HBS went from 104 for two to 108 for seven.

With Ryan Klein (21 not out) managing the tail the visitors reached 139, Khalid Ahmadi again cleaning up to finish with four for 17, and Klein then grabbed three quick wickets, reducing Sparta to 31 for three.

That soon became 42 for five, and although Manminder Singh, Nasratullah Ibrahimkhil and Ahmadi were able to achieve a partial recovery, Klein returned to end the innings on 103 and finish with figures of five for 27, Ahmadi left not out on 23.

Group A rivals Punjab Rotterdam had fewer problems in accounting for ACC at Het Zomercomplex, bowling their opponents out for 87, of which skipper Anis Raza made a dogged 32 before he was eighth out.

The total at that point was only 57, but Rob Ackermann and Mees van Vliet added another 30 for the final two wickets; Safiullah Salarazai was the pick of the Punjab bowlers with four for 17.

Defending another disappointing total, ACC fought back hard, Van Vliet picking up three for 15 as Punjab crumpled to a precarious 24 for five, but Saqib Zulfiqar and Teja Nidamanuru ensured that there was no further damage, knocking off the remaining runs and ending on 23 not out and 43 not out respectively.

HCC consolidated their claim on the third Championship spot from Group A with a seven-wicket victory over Kampong Utrecht at Maarschalkerweerd.

Put in to bat, Kampong struggled to create momentum against an effective HCC attack in which the seam of Hidde Overdijk (four for 21) combined well with the left-arm spin of Tim Pringle, who took two for 17 in his ten overs.

Usman Malik batted for 85 deliveries for his 26, and it was only the late interventions of Sherry Butt and debutant Tushar Sharma which enabled the home side to reach 158.

HCC found scoring almost as difficult at first, but once Overdijk joined Zac Worden with the total on 70 for three the complexion of the innings changed; Worden reached his third half-century in as many innings, finishing with an unbeaten 65, made from 91 balls with five fours and a six, while Overdijk was the more aggressive of the pair, his 40 not out coming from 53 deliveries and including four fours and a six.

If the bowlers were generally in command in Group A, batters flourished to a greater degree in Group B.

In the Amsterdamse Bos VRA Amsterdam posted the highest total of the day with 253 for seven against Dosti Amsterdam, pinch hitter Eduard Visser kicking off with a 25-ball 40 and opening partner Vikram Singh contributing 49 before skipper Peter Borren took over in the middle overs with a 65-ball 58.

With Luke Scully, Jack Balbirnie and Aryan Dutt all chipping in VRA succeeded in setting Dosti a fairly formidable total, and it soon proved well beyond them: with Visser, debutant Anish Shah and Dutt picking up two wickets apiece and Leon Turmaine cleaning up the tail to finish with three for 11, they were bowled out for 70, giving VRA victory by 183 runs.

A solid effort by Voorburg’s top order saw them to 233 for five against VOC Rotterdam at Westvliet: Musa Nadeem Ahmad (52) made his first half-century for his new club, skipper Bas de Leede scored 62 and Delano Potgieter 49.

VOC made a decent start in reply, Max O’Dowd posting 59 before falling to young Shariz Ahmad, but apart from Arnav Jain (31) and Pieter Seelaar (39 not out) the rest of the batting again failed, and with Bobby Hanif, who had bowled just one delivery in Voorburg’s innings before retiring with a knee injury, unable to bat, the Rotterdammers were all out for 190.

Promoted side Salland were unable to repeat their heroics of the previous day and lost to Excelsior ‘20 by seven wickets at Thurlede: Elam Bharathi top-scored with 38 out of their total of 123, Joost Kroesen taking three for 26 for Excelsior.

Younger brother Luuk then made 38 when the Schiedammers replied, and with Lorenzo Ingram unbeaten on 31 they reached their target with more than 26 overs to spare.

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