Geoff Morrison’s powers of concentration ensured FPs took the spoils on a tricky deck at Kemnay as he battled for 121 balls and 134 minutes over his 49 as he blocked Academy into submission. It was not an innings for the purist, that contained just 3 fours and 1 six but it was effective and it set things up for Karan Anand to smash 22 not out from 12 to see FPs home by 4 wickets. Academy had set a competitive 168 all out, worth many more due to the long grass, Mark Forbes taking 3 for 25, but FPs chased it down with 8 overs to spare.
With the stag party returning, FPs lined up Keith, Morrison, Steinson, Swiergon (c), Senthil, Anand, Forbes, Mapplebeck, Clelland, Knudson and Thomson. FPs won the toss and chose to bowl on a green wicket, with Mark Forbes still in bed, Anand took the new ball with Mapplebeck and despite some accurate bowling, Academy advanced to 16 for 0 in 10. Partnership breaker Steinson was summoned and his short delivery did for Mirashi who gloved him to Keith at 2nd slip for 14. Thomson joined the attack and soon won two LBWs, O’Connor 5 and Vijapur 0 bang in front as Academy slid to 31 for 3.
Tenneti was joined by Reddy and they batted very well together and added 63, really putting Academy on top. Having struck Anand for a straight six, one of 4 he hit, he was superbly bowled by Anand to fall for 50. Kola was then beaten for pace by Anand for 0 as FPs looked to take control.
Forbes had by now joined the game and was able to bowl and he quickly nipped in with 3 wickets, producing a nasty spell to account for Shnivasan for 10, caught by Senthil at mid wicket and then Newton who could only glove to Keith at 2nd slip. His 3rd arrived when Vaslan edged to Anand at 1st slip as FPs catching remained secure.
Tenneti was batting with great care and passed 50 as he pushed Academy past 150. However when he fell for 61, well caught at mid of by Forbes, Academy’s chances of a big score diminished. Mapplebeck finished the job by having Majeed caught brilliantly one handed by Clelland as Academy closed on 168 all out.
On paper 168 would normally be well under par, but on the difficult wicket and long outfield it was competitive and meant FPs needed some sensible batting.
FPs started cautiously but had reached 30 when Keith walked having inside edged Vijapur to Tenneti for 23. Morrison and Steinson continued the careful approach taking FPs to 66 in 18 overs, when Steinson was caught at the wicket off Srinavasan for 16. The careful accumulation continued as the skipper joined Morrison and they kept the required rate below 4 with some good running in adding 36 before Swiergon was bowled for 19. There was one running error as Swiergon failed to touch in his bat costing Morrison a vital run.
Morrison was continuing to block and leave religiously and found a good ally in Arul Senthil who put bat to ball with a positive 19 before disastrously running himself out. New man Karan Anand joined Morrison as FPs looked to find the remaining 29 runs they needed. However Morrison’s epic was ended by Reddy’s 1st ball which shot along the ground to bowl him for a spirited 49. When Forbes fell LBW for a 4 ball 2, Academy sensed a shock victory. However, Karan Anand put paid to any thoughts of such a thing as he blasted 2 fours and 2 sixes as FPs ran out 4 wicket winners.
Man of the Match
Morrison’s innings was not pretty or exciting, but he did the hard yards for his match winning 49, it would have been 50 if the skipper had managed to run properly…
Clelland’s stunning catch to finish the innings.Scorecard Academy v AGSFPs