Mohammedan Sporting Club and Town Club created history in “Kolkata first division cricket” by chasing 500+ in the quarter-final. Mohammedan chased 502 to beat reigning champions Bhawanipore Club. On the other hand, Town Club defeated Mohun Bagan Athletic Club by chasing down 546 in the other quarter-final.
A brilliant century from Koushik Ghosh took Bhawanipore to 501 on a wicket that looked good for batting from day one. Koushik, who always performed well on the big occasions, showed his class in the first inning. Along with him, Abhishek Raman scored a beautiful ton (126 off 168) to set Bhawanipore for another semi-final spot. But, Mohammedan batters had other things in mind.
With 501 on board, Bhawanipore looked for some early wickets. And, they got two in the name of Jayojit Basu and Aditya Purohit. But, things started changing as Gitimoy Basu and Ravikant Shukla started building a partnership. On a batting-friendly pitch, as they settled in, it was tough for Bhawanipore bowlers to get them out. Their 152-run partnership was finally broken when Gitimoy Basu was sent off by Sandipan Das for a well-made 91.
But, the riot from Ravikant Shukla kept on going. Bhawanipore bowlers did not have an answer for his glorious strokes as Mohammedan looked for history. Ravikant had the support from Vikas who played a vital knock of 87 from 214 balls. When Ravikant departed after scoring 218 from 254 balls, Mohammedan still needed 52 runs. But, Both Viraj Krishna (34*) and Dip Chatterjee (16*) took them home.
“The dressing room vibe was always positive. The experience we have in the dressing room is enormous. People used to call us the Old-Age team. Now, see, what experienced players can bring to the table,” Md. Nasim, a Mohammedan Sporting player told Sportz Point after the win.
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Meanwhile, at Deshbandhu Park Ground, Town Club did the unthinkable as they defeated Mohun Bagan by 1 wicket. A star-studded Mohun Bagan scored 546/9 as their six batters scored fifty-plus scores on a batting-friendly wicket. Opener Rishab Mishra (107) and Abhimanyu Easwaran (81) gave the perfect start to Mohun Bagan and then Ayush Kumar Singh, Arindam Ghosh, Uvais Ahmad and Subham Sarkar scored fifties to take them over 500, which looked quite impossible to chase down.
However, Town batters had something other in mind. Captain Naved Ahmed scored a beautiful 92 while other top-order batters failed to score big runs for them. Then, it was Sandeep Tomar (46), Saksham Chaudhary (81), Azaz Ansari (85*) and Mohammad Kaif (96) who took them home. Not to forget Geet Puri’s 24 from 14 balls as the number 11 batter. Town won by 1 wicket with just two balls left in the match. Mohammad Kaif was the player of the match for this outstanding contribution with both bat and ball.
In the other quarter-finals, Kalighat defeated East Bengal by 88 runs. Barisha Sporting Club defeated Aryan Club by 8 wickets.