Patel, Masaba hold fort for Ruaraka in low – scoring NPCA affair

Ruaraka Sports Club ‘A’s Vishil Patel bowls against Sikh Union Sports Club ‘A’ on 8/8/21 in their away NPCA fixture as umpire Rockie D’ Mello looks on.

Vishil Patel picked four wickets as Ruaraka Sports Club ‘A’ extended their unbeaten run to three matches with a four – wicket win over hosts Sikh Union Sports Club ‘A’ in their Nairobi Provincial Cricket Association (NPCA) Super league match played  at Sikh Union over the weekend.

In a match in which the top orders of both teams failed, Brian Masaba (27) and Pankaj Bhudia (22) lifted the visitors from 4 – 44 in the 10th over to 88-5 in the 22nd over, chasing the hosts’ 94 runs.

Uganda Cricket Cranes’ skipper Brian Masaba is proud of the momentum the team has been on since their arrival (alongside Zephania Arinaitwe and Kenneth Waiswa.) “We’ll take the win first up as it’s important to maintain that momentum. We bowled well to restrict them to 94 runs, especially young Vishil. The pitch was quite tricky to chase on because of the grip and turn on offer but luckily, our middle order saw us through.” Stated Masaba to kenya – cricket.com.

Patel was the architect of the home team’s poor show with the bat by claiming three of the middle order batsmen and the number nine batsman, returning figures of 4/16 from his entire allotment that included two maidens.

His scalps included top scorers Sukhdeep Singh (29) and Muhammad Kalyan (11) with the board on 41 and 48 respectively. Others were a returning Paarth Dixit (1) and Gurleen Singh (6).
The hosts’ innings began on a sour note when opener Himanshu Dixit’s woes continued as he was forced to walk off the field off the first ball of the innings – retired hurt.

His replacement, Harpreet Gill only lasted three balls before he was back in the pavilion courtesy of Ugandan import Kenneth Waiswa who had him caught behind for a duck.

Raj Manji and skipper Sukhdeep tried to salvage the innings with a 31 – run stand for the third wicket through 10 overs before Harshit Vekaria broke it with the dismissal of Manji for only six runs off 23 balls.

The Manji – Sukhdeep stand was the best for the team as the remaining wickets came up so easily with Patel calling the shots.

Skipper Purshotam Vekariya finished with 2/16 off his five overs while Kenneth Waiwsa scalped 2/27 off his nine.

Ruaraka’s innings also began on a shaky note, losing their first wicket for nine runs as Chandresh Hirani departed for 8 off 4 deliveries before Zephania Arinaitwe (16) added on 15 for the second wicket with Pushkar Sharma in just 15 balls.

Zephania Arinaitwe bats for Ruaraka Sports Club ‘A’ at Sikh union Sports Club on 08/08/21 in the NPCA League

Last week’s centurion, Sharma, could only manage to put up eight runs before being caught off Gurleen.

Two overs later, Ruaraka were three wickets down when Charanpreet Aidhy had Arinaitwe caught by Harpreet Gill with the board effectively on 3/34.

Waiswa and Bhudia added on 10 for the fourth wicket; the Ugandan international falling in the tenth over to pave way for his national team skipper, Masaba, who added 44 to the fifth wicket with Bhudia before they were both dismissed successively.

Bhudia was out for 22 off 44 balls when Ruaraka were just seven runs away from victory, Masaba following him back to the dug out an over later with three runs short of victory, 27 runs off 42 balls to his name.

Aidhy was the pick of the bowlers for Sikh Union with 3/30 from seven overs.

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