FPs ground out their 4th win in a row in a low scoring affair versus Knightriders at Groats Road. Despite being bowled out for 157, some disciplined bowling on an uneven batting surface ensured that Knightriders were always behind the rate and could only muster 133 for 8 when time ran out. For FPs, youngster Hegde top scored with a measured 32, while Senthil chipped in with 28 and some lower order resistance from Mapplebeck 12* and Stuart 12 ensured FPs posted a competitive score. A superb opening spell of 12 overs, 1 for 14 from Vijapur and 3 wickets for Thomson and 2 each for Knudson and Mapplebeck ensured FPs were victorious.
FPs made 1 change with Swiergon replacing star man Keith and FPs lined up Morrison, Senthil, Tenneti, Swiergon, Hegde, McDonald, Vijapur, Mapplebeck, Knudson, Stuart and Thomson. Morrison lost the toss and FPs were asked to bat on a surface they only made 33 on last year. With a par score likely to be around 175, FPs made quick progress with Morrison and Senthil running very keenly to quickly score 39 for the 1st wicket, a large amount of these being extras. The bounce was uneven and there were a few close calls before Morrison was bowled for 11 by a good Vallatharasu delivery. Tenneti joined Senthil and they batted with patience to reach 72, when Senthil went to pull a short ball that kept low and was LBW for 28.
Swiergon fell for 4 in calamitous circumstances, having nearly holed out at deep square leg, he was sent back looking for a seemingly simple single and was run out for 5. New man Hegde hooked his 1st ball for four before being dropped soon after, but he played with patience and assurance to anchor FPs innings and remained unflustered despite losing Tenneti for 16 and McDonald 0 from successive deliveries from Harish. Vijapur was quickly caught for 5 off Sathya’s bowling and FPs were in some trouble at 95 for 6.
Mapplebeck and Hegde ran keenly to add 25, but Hegde fell for a well played 32 (3×4), well caught off Bala’s offspin. Knudson was bowled 1st ball looking to cut, but Mapplebeck found some help from Stuart who clubbed 2 boundaries in a useful 12. Thomson clubbed a four before being bowled and that left Mapplebeck on 12 not out and FPs all out for 157. It was a score worth at least 30 more due the slow outfield and given the surface was certainly defendable.
FPs started as they were to go on with a good tight opening spell a Mapplebeck and Vijapur conceded just 24 in the 1st 14 overs. FPs were convinced that they had Satya caught at the wicket off Mapplebeck but the batsman indicated it had come off his body and he survived. He was soon adjudged LBW for 7 to Mapplebeck to a ball that would have probably hit the leg stump.
FPs had to wait until the 20th over for another wicket, Vijapur winning an LBW against Pradeep for 18, Knightriders 39 for 2. Knudson made it 40 for 3 when he bowled Gopi for 2 and having dropped a caught and bowled off against Bala, he ensured the catch cost nothing by bowling him via an inside edge.
Raja and Mohan then combined for Knightriders to add 55 in 14 overs as Knigtriders looked to up the pace. Tenneti, Mappebeck, Hegde and Swiergon all missed chances uncharacteristically in the field and Morrison missed a tough stumping chance off Thomson as FPs strived for a breakthrough. As has often been the case in FPs run, it was Thomson who made the key breakthrough bowling Raja for 26 and he repeated the trickto dismiss Mohan for 27 to all but secure victory, his glasses being broken in the celebrations.
With new glasses on he nearly had a 4th as Morrison;s quick hands looked like he had stumped Hashish but the batsman had somehow made it back into his ground. Thomson dispatched Srikanth, well caught by Hegde for 14 as Knigtriders hopes faded away. Mapplebeck sent down the last over with Knightriders still needing 29 and he claimed his 2nd wicket, Senthil catching Hasish for 14 as Knightriders closed out on 133 for 8.
It had been an excellent bowling performance from FPs and despite some poor catching the ground fielding was excellent. Final bowling figures were Mapplebeck 12-2-36-2, Vijapur 12-4-14-1, Knudson 7-0-17-2, Thomson 10-0-33-3 and Stuart 4-0-22-0. With 4 wins in a row, FPs have lifted themselves out of the relegation zone and will look to continue their good form as they play their final home game next week against Cults. As with the earlier game with Knightriders, the game was played in a generally good spirit with both sides prepared to give decisions despite there being no umpires.