The city known as the Mecca of Indian cricket, Mumbai kicked off the newest “T20 Mumbai” league in style as the Wankhede Stadium witnessed two thrilling matches yesterday. ARCS Andheri and Triumph Knights MNE overcame odds to register their first wins in the Mumbai Cricket Association (MCA) tournament.
Following the footsteps of Tamilnadu Premier League (TNPL) and Karnataka Premier League (KPL), the MCA decided to come up with its own city-based league. Mumbai players have divided themselves into six teams, four of which were seen in action yesterday.
In the first match of the tournament, ARCS Andheri came up trumps against North Mumbai Panthers. The Andheri team missing their Captain Rohit Sharma, who is currently leading the Indian team in Bangladesh, was in early trouble as they collapsed to 16/4.
Andheri’s all-rounders stepped up to the plate in a difficult situation and stitched a 117-runs partnership for the fifth wicket. Shubham Ranjane 65(50) and Parag Khanapurkar 61(38) took Andheri’s total to an imposing 164/7.
Reply from North Mumbai Panthers started off on a promising note as Prithvi Shaw and Ajinkya Rahane started dealing in boundaries. Ranjane again came to the fore and dismissed both the dangerous batsmen in quick succession. Panthers could not recover from the twin blow and fell short by 23 runs.
The night game between SoBo Supersonics and Triumph Knights Mumbai North East was lit up with fireworks coming from Jay Bista and Aakash Parkar. Supersonics batted first and piled up 184/7, Top-scorer Jay Bista scored a whirlwind 52(38). Victory did not look far for them when they had Triumph Knights languishing at 56/6 in 9.4 overs.
Aakash Parkar and Aditya Dhumal trying to salvage the dire condition started stroking the ball fearlessly. Supersonic bowlers panicked as they saw the ball being hit faster than the speed of sound. Soon enough, Rampaging Aakash Parkar 82*(37) and Aditya Dhumal 50*(34) pulled off a miraculous win under lights.
Both the matches on the first day provided super entertainment for those in attendance and to those viewing it on Sony ESPN. The party continues at the Wankhede stadium today with two scheduled fixtures.
12th March Fixtures
3:30 PM IST Shivaji Park Lions vs NaMo Bandra Blasters
7:30 PM IST SoBo SuperSonics vs North Mumbai Panthers