The winning team celebrates at Dhanbad Railway Stadium. (Gautam Dey)
Dhanbad, June 9: Sensible middle order batting, superb ground fielding and some tight death over bowling, it all clicked for Nirsa Warriors on “the” night of the tournament when it mattered the most.
The maiden edition of the IPL-styled Dhanbad Premier League (DPL) wound up in the coal capital on Friday night with the Shahbaz Nadeem- led Nirsa Warriors trumping a star-studded Sindri Sher batting line up to be crowned as the winners.
At the end, more than the failure of batting mainstay Saurabh Tiwary, it was the pressure of playing in a final which got to the Sindri team, who collapsed in their chase of 192 runs.
The Nirsa team, after being asked to bat first on the Railway Stadium pitch which had been soaked by heavy showers a day before, made the most of their opportunity, with all their top order batsmen, except Manish Vardhan, scoring at a brisk pace. Their run flow, however, revolved around the exploits of one man, Ramiz Remat, who scored a classy 65 runs, running hard and dispatching the bad balls to the fence, or over it, with authority.
Remat’s efforts were well complimented by captain Nadeem who scored a 30 runs to propel the innings and Sikandar Hayat and Keshav who chipped in with contributions of 37 runs and 22 runs respectively to set the Sindri team a score of 191 to chase in 20 overs.
Sindri, whose wins have been mainly due to the exploits of Tiwary, however, stuttered early in their chase.
The Nirsa bowlers, sticking to a teasing line and length, were able to pick the wicket of Tiwary, prompting the Sindri team to press the panic button. Sauvik Mitra and Deepak June, however, later calmed some nerves with a display of some wonderful power hitting to guide their team through the middle overs without any more damage and setting up for a final assault.
However, there was a twist in the tale, when Deepak departed the crease with his team’s score on 99. What followed next was an example of some wonderful ground fielding by the Nirsa fielders, who had sensed an opening to close out the match and dived around in the field to effect three run outs in three balls.
Sindri’s middle order batsmen Ajatshatru, Aftab Alam and Shiv Prakash all found themselves short of the crease due to some horrible calling, denting their side’s chances of making a match out of the total. The Sindri team finally fizzled out for 152 runs for 9 wickets and had to be content with the runners-up trophy and a cheque of Rs 50,000.
The Nirsa team, on the other hand, walked home with a cash prize of Rs 1 lakh, besides the winners trophy.
Ramiz Remat was declared the Man of the Match for his startling effort with the bat with Saurabh Tiwary being named the best batsman and the Man of the Tournament. The best fielder’s award went to Shahbaz Nadeem.
The match was watched by a host of dignitaries, which included the AGM of East Central Railway Ajay Shukla, who gave away the prizes, JSCA secretary Rajesh Verma, Dhanbad DRM Sudhir Kumar, ADRM rajesh Mohan, Dhanbad Cricket Association chief Manoj Kumar and DPL chairman Dayanand.