Rod Lyall 22/05/22
It’s been coming for a while, but Kampong Utrecht pulled off the upset of the season so far at Maarschalkerweerd on Saturday, dismissing previously-unbeaten defending champions Punjab Rotterdam by two wickets in a hard-fought match.
Punjab’s batting has shown some signs of vulnerability in earlier games, and Kampong skipper Usman Malik gave his side a great start by getting Steph Myburgh caught at point by Cole Briggs off the first ball he received.
Rehmat Zulfiqar and his brother Asad added 50 for the second wicket, but then Malik removed them both, and although Sikander Zulfiqar made 37 Punjab could only manage 145 before they were all out, Malik finishing with three for 15 from his ten overs.
Kampong were soon in trouble in their turn as they subsided to 37 for four, including overseas player Pite van Biljon, in the side for the first time this season, and at 75 for eight they seemed to be heading for a sixth defeat on the trot.
But Robert van der Harten now joined Alex Roy, and they knocked off the remaining runs in 15 overs, both finishing unbeaten on 36; Safiullah Salarazai took three for 36 for Punjab and Saqib Zulfiqar three for 37.
The victory enabled Kampong to leapfrog ACC, who suffered a nine-wicket defeat at the hands of HBS at Craeyenhout; their win also meant that the Crows have moved level with Punjab at the top of the Group A table.
The Craeyenhout side had little difficulty in chasing down ACC’s total of 199 for six, in which Thomas Hobson top-scored with 47, while Wesley Barresi claimed three for 50 with his off-breaks.
Barresi then joined Tayo Walbrugh in an unbroken second-wicket stand of 183 after Mees van Vliet had grabbed the early wicket of Reece Mason; Walbrugh took a century off the ACC attack for the second time this season, finishing on 105 not out, with Barresi making 91 not out.
In the remaining Group A game HCC consolidated their position in third with a 144-run victory over Sparta 1888 after reaching 260 all out, Tim Pringle top-scoring with 91.
Zac Worden’s run of half-centuries came to an end when he was dismissed by Ahsan Malik for a mere 30, but Clayton Floyd chimed in with 48, sharing a sixth-wicket stand of 101 with Pringle.
Malik was the pick of the Sparta attack with five for 45.
Samit Gohil played a lone hand when the Capelle side replied: he was ninth out having made 57 in a total of 116, but the HCC bowling was too strong for his team-mates, Hidde Overdijk taking three for 27 and Floyd three for 10.
An improvised Salland side, missing its German contingent, was no match for VRA Amsterdam in Deventer and was speedily dismissed for just 36, Ashir Abid taking five for 10 in nine overs and Anish Shah three for 12, and no-one in the Salland line-up reaching double figures.
VRA secured the win even more speedily, needing only 4.3 overs to complete a seven-wicket victory, Vikram Singh ending on 28 not out.
The victory enabled VRA to move clear in second place in Group B, although they are two wins behind leaders Voorburg, who had some uncomfortable moments before overcoming Excelsior ’20 Schiedam by four wickets.
After restricting Excelsior to 180 for nine, in which Stan van Troost made 37 and Lorenzo Ingram and Joost Kroesen 30 apiece, Voorburg were struggling on 70 for five, Tom Heggelman having dismissed both Janneman Malan and Delano Potgieter for golden ducks as well as collecting the wicket of Musa Nadeem Ahmad.
But Logan van Beek then set about rescuing his side, and his unbeaten 70, supported first by Karl Nieuwoudt and then by Shariz Ahmad, was enough to get Voorburg across the line with 20 deliveries to spare; Heggelman finished with three for 31.
This defeat saw Excelsior slip out of the top three, at least for the present, as VOC Rotterdam overtook them on net run rate after a somewhat surprisingly hard-fought encounter with Dosti Amsterdam at the Hazelaarweg.
Max O’Dowd’s 130 not out saw the Rotterdammers to the day’s highest total with 268 for four, Scott Edwards (37), Arnav Jain (26) and Tim de Kok (30) all making useful contributions, but Kuldeep Diwan hit back with 113, and Dosti came within 19 runs of their hosts.
Dosti still needed 61 with just three overs left and two wickets in hand, but Diwan launched a fierce onslaught, hitting Max Hoornweg for three sixes in two overs and Pieter Seelaar for two sixes and a four, but Hoornweg got his man with the penultimate delivery of the game.
Earlier, Jelte Schoonheim had picked up three for 66 and Jain and Seelaar two wickets apiece to put Dosti on the back foot, but Diwan’s innings, while the final flurry came a little too late, gave the Amsterdam side hope that before long they, like Kampong, might end their run of defeats.