Moufflons captain and chairman of Cyprus Cricket Association Muhammad Husain is presented with an Essex county cap by Graham Davies, Essex's head coach for disability cricket, who watched the game at Dhekelia while on holiday in Cyprus
Ravi Kumar had a debut to remember at Dhekelia on Sunday. In his first game for Moufflons CC he played a big part in their opening day win over ESBA by scoring a solid 28, taking two wickets for only 10 runs in his four overs of left arm spin, and holding two sharp catches, as his team beat their hosts by 93 runs.
Moufflons got off to a flying start as Mehran Khan and Lakhwinder Singh put on 80 for the first wicket inside 8 overs. Lakhwinder was first to go, caught in the deep by Matt Coles. Mehran played some excellent shots in completing a rapid fifty, but was dropped four times on the way – misses which proved costly to ESBA.
After the openers departed, batting became more difficult, and Moufflons were indebted to Ravi for seeing them through to a decent total of 171 for 6 off their 20 overs. Coles and Andy Hornbuckle took two wickets each for ESBA.
The home side needed a good start but lost their first 5 wickets for 28, with only Hornbuckle’s 17 making much impression. Debutant Xander Taylor managed to stop the rot, but runs were hard to come by as Murtaza Yamin and Gursewak Singh backed up Ravi’s bowling, and the innings subsided to 78 all out in the final over, the game ending with a direct-hit run out by Moufflons’ captain Muhammad Husain, who was pleased with his team’s efforts with bat and ball.
Meanwhile at Happy Valley ground Sri Lankans CC opened their programme with an equally convincing win over Akrotiri. In a match reduced to 17 overs per side Sri Lankans made a daunting score of 170 for two wickets. Opening batsman Tiriwana Mangala was dropped three times on his way to 97, but missed out on a century when adjudged LBW. He received good support from Prarthana Denuwan, who was run out for 49.
Akrotiri batted poorly in reply and were all out for 68, with K Kapila taking 3 for 5 and Pradeep Nalin 2 for 19. Steve Chong, who top-scored with 22, commented “Both teams played the game in good spirit, and without the seven dropped catches (by his team) it would have probably been a good game”.
In the other game at Happy Valley Punjab Lions defeated Sri Lanka Lions.
Next Sunday’s games at Happy Valley see CTL College take on newcomers Nicosia XI Fighters at 9am, while the afternoon game at 1pm features another new team, Riyaan, against Eastern Cyprus.