TROJAN CRICKET CLUB
University of Southern California
Cromwell Champs vs Popovich Panthers match reportNov 24, 2015 06:31 PM | Popovich Panthers won by 41 runs | Scorecard
Popovich Panthers win CPL Fall Championship
The Panthers completed a clean sweep (8-0) record to stay undefeated and win the Cromwell Trophy by beating the Cromwell Champs by 41 runs. The two teams met 3 times during the tournament and PP came out on top with convincing wins in all 3 games.
The final game was a T-20 affair and CC skipper Rana Aijaz won the toss and elected to bowl first. Panthers lineup was bolstered as they got skipper Tarun Sandhu back after missing the last couple of games. However, they were missing Ankur Saxena (leading wicket taker for PP), Pravin (injury), Nausher and Khushnu. Sushil Premjani slammed 2 consecutive sixes off Vidya in the 1st over to kick off proceedings. Rana pulled things back for CC in the next over by dismissing both openers (Sushil and Sohan) with the score at 22/2. Kamalpreet Kalsi walked in at #3 and played a mix of brilliantly timed cover drives along with some lofted pulls. Aayush Ghand and Kamal strung together a decent stand and kept the score ticking at 10 rpo. Gaurav Mathur came in midway during the PP batting and put on his best batting performance in the tournament. Along with Tarun, the duo put together 77 runs in just 6 overs. Mathur unleashed some ferocious pulls which saw the balls clearing the roofs of neighboring buildings. PP were 180/5 in 17 overs when they took the batting powerplay. 40 runs came off the 18th and 19th over as PP posted a daunting 227 in the allotted 20 overs. Kalsi – 64, Mathur – 64, Tarun -28 and Sushil – 18 were the key performers for PP. Shashank was the pick of the bowlers for CC (1/26) as the rest of the CC bowlers put up economy rates of 9 plus rpo.
In reply, CC started with a couple of good overs as Vir and Gaurav N. hit a couple of sixes each to get the chase underway. Raj took a brilliant one handed grab to dismiss Gaurav and Vir holed out at deep mid-wicket. At the end of mandatory 4 over powerplay CC were 42/2. CC skipper Rana Aijaz walked in at the start of the 5th over and Tarun Sandhu took the bowling powerplay (2 overs) and got himself and Gaurav Mathur on. The duo created CPL history by bowling 2 consecutive maidens in the bowling powerplay. Mathur was exceptional in his line and made Rana struggle to get bat on ball. Sandhu was fierce on the other end and made the batsmen play and miss as well. Finally, Mathur had the CC skipper frustrated and caught at long on. CC looked in desperate trouble at this stage with the score at 42/3 in 7 overs. However, Suhas (rookie of the season) provided a great fightback for CC and with support from Ronak and Ankit Sultania, he took on the PP spinners to keep CC’s hopes alive. Tarun Sandhu came back for his 3rd over and got Suhas and Ankit out on consecutive balls to take out the wind of the CC attack. With 90 required off the last 6 overs, Shashank and Dheemanth batted out the remaining overs but the task was too daunting. Nikita Shinde and Liya Sandhu earned cheers from both teams during the mandatory girl over. Eventually PP won the battle and completed a dominant series performance by 41 runs. Suhas – 49 was the pick of the batters for CC. Sandhu 2/21 and Mathur 1/36 starred with the ball. Kamalpreet Kalsi and Gaurav were declared joint MVP’s for this final game.
The Panthers created CPL history as the 1st team to win out undefeated in the 10-year history of the CPL tournament. Notable performers for PP with the bat were Gaurav Mathur (177 runs), Tarun (158) and Kalsi (158). Vikas scored a 109* off just 39 balls and earned a trophy for his exceptional innings. Rookies Sohan (124) and Aayush (95) also put up good performances. Ankur Saxena (12/135) and Mayur Shah (12/177) were the top wicket takers and Mathur (ER 4.6) and Sandhu (ER 4.4) were exceptional. Sushil Premjani earned the trophy for best fielder (13 dismissals). Many thanks to our cheerleaders Khushnu and Liya for their support. Go Pinkies…!