Match Report: Düsseldorf Blackcaps vs Köln CC
Blackcaps are back to the field again and what a way to start the season, beating Köln CC in the first friendly game by 2 wickets and 8 overs in hand.
Köln CC won the toss and elected to bat first, although the weather wasn't good i.e. rainy & sluggish. Blackcaps did really well to get the early breakthroughs, they did not allow Köln CC to score freely even though the conditions weren't supporting them as the ground was wet and slippery. As the game progressed Köln CC kept on rotating the strike well and managed to score 54/2 after 10 overs but then Arun (Blackcaps) took two wickets in consecutive overs and pushed Köln on the backseat but the middle order tried to pull things over by not giving any further wickets for a few overs and managed to reach 102/7 in 24 overs, tailenders further added few more runs before Blackcaps finished off first innings in style by bowling out Köln at 123 in 30 overs. Shri (16), Manish (18), Gaurav (13) Dhruv (7) and Abhishek (10) contributed for Köln CC. for BlackCaps Hitesh took 3, Dhairya & Arun 2 each, Tarun, Sudipro and Gaurav took 1 scalp each. Even though the total score was a mere 123 (Köln CC) but the grit & determination shown by the players was commendable, most of the players in both team were new and had never played in such conditions.
Weather conditions became better in the second innings which helped Köln CC bowlers who managed to move the ball quite efficiently, which also meant a bad start for Blackcaps they lost two wickets in second over but huge applauds for Rahul (46) and Hitesh (9) who made sure to see off the new ball while not giving in any further breakthroughs to Köln CC bowlers and scored 37/2 in 9 overs. It was the 10th over when Köln struck again to push Blackcaps on the backseat. Köln cc bowlers capitalized really well after this, especially Shri (5 wickets) and Grinesh (2 wickets) who bowled beautifully in the middle overs to make sure that wickets fall regularly to get Blackcaps under tremendous pressure with 72/8 after 21 overs. It is when Blackcaps captain Tarun went in to stabilize the innings and to sail the ship to the shore. Arun (20*) along with the Tarun (21*) batted really well to make sure that team wins the match with no further loss of wickets.
All in all a great effort from both the teams keeping the spirit of the game high and putting in the best efforts all around in spite of awful weather conditions. This experience would certainly help new players during the official league to prepare accordingly.
Keep watching this section for further updates as Blackcaps have a long season to go and as NRW champions of Bundesliga 2016 they would surely give you a soothing experience with much better performances.