The inaugural inter-school U-17 Cricket tournament bowled off at the Coast this past weekend with four private schools taking part. The tournament, under the mantra of the Coast Cricket Association (CCA) is being held at the Coast Gymkhana and Mombasa Sports Club with participants from Oshwal Academy, Aga Khan Academy, Shree Swaminarayan Academy (SSA) and Jafferey Academy. CCA is banking on these matches to identify talent for the next crop of players to represent the region at the national level.
The initial round matches were played on 23rd January, with Shree Swaminarayan Academy emerging the clear favourites.
At the Coast Gymkhana, Shree Swaminarayan Academy beat Oshwal Academy by a whooping 82 runs in the morning match, courtesy of impressive top order batting. Batting first, SSA amassed 7/162 from their 20 overs courtesy of Dev Hirani (42), Trikant Gami (35) and Pritesh Hirani (35). In spite of the hail of runs, Shukan Mehta bagged 2/19 off his three overs as Harkishan Singh managed 2/14 off his two overs for Oshwal Academy.
In reply, Oshwal Academy could barely cop up half the runs, their troubles beginning earlier on when dependable opener Puru Sharma was trapped leg before by Dev Hirani for a duck. His opening partner Viral Shah went on to score 22 runs as Shukan Mehta top scored with 39 runs.
Raj Gami and Vilok Halai finished with identical figures of 2/02 for SSA off their two overs combined.
In the afternoon match at the same venue, SSA mauled Aga Khan Academy by a 169 run margin, after raising their run total to 8/191 off their allotted 20 overs.
Star all rounder Dev Hirani was once again the star of SSA, making his mark with his first half century of the tournament. Hirani (54), had the worthy backing of Pritesh Hirani who was torridly run out a run short of his half century and Trikant Gami (29).
Aga Khan Academy provided no contest in their run chase, as the negligible (15) amounted to the highest score of their innings of 10/22 runs. Renish Kanjiyani (03) was the top run scorer for them as Niran Halai (4/03 off 2.2 overs) led the scathing bowling attack. Dev Hirani (2/05), Hiren Halai (2/04) and Suryakant Varshani (2/06 off two overs) backed up with impressive bowling figures.
Mombasa Sports Club saw Jafferey Academy beat Aga Khan by 28 runs in a low scoring affair. Suraj Patel (23) top scored for Jaffery Academy even as they were bowled out for 63 runs in 18.3 overs. A splendid bowling and fielding effort rewarded the Aga Khan bowlers with wickets in the form of Wahhab Jawaid (2/20), Aliasgar Jafferji (2/12), Kamil Sorathia (2/09) and Ramish Kanjiyani (2/04).
Aga Khan were, however, bowled out for a paltry 35 runs in just 14 overs, Hamza Afzal (13) the sole batsman to manage double figures enroute to being bowled by Vijay Patel. Sukhraj Singh starred with the ball for Jafferey Academy with impressive figures of 4/05 with Anthony D’Souza picking 3/06.
The final match at Mombasa Sports Club saw Oshwal Academy redeem their pride with a 41-run win over Jafferey Academy.
Shukan Mehta (43) and Puru Sharma (34) led Oshwal Academy to an improbable 2/123 off 20 overs. In reply, the Jafferey Academy trio of Tilak Patel (22), Suraj Patel (15) and Jay Patel (10) aided the 7/82 final scoreline as Karan Shah (2/08) and Ambuj Rajan (2/04) struck for Oshwal Academy with the ball.
The round robin tournament will see the top two teams compete for the CCA Coast U-17 Trophy on 6th February 2016 at the Coast Gymkhana from 2:00pm after the final group fixtures are played on the same morning. SSA currently top the table with two wins and a spectacular net run rate of 6.250.