Road to glory: QE’s youngest cricketers crown an excellent season with victory in the county cup final
July 20, 2018
July 20, 2018
The Year 7 team got their QE cricketing careers off to a great start by winning the Middlesex Schools Final – while Year 8 were also finalists in their county cup and Years 9 and 10 reached their respective semi-finals.
Assistant Head of PE & Games Rhys Davies-Horne, who coached the U12s, charted the Year 7s’ “road to glory”, which began with a “memorable first win” against New Hall School just three days after the Easter holiday. “An excellent performance from Bilal Hassan with both bat and ball saw him claim the captaincy for the season, with Ranvir Sinha helping out with duties as vice-captain.”
Wins then came thick and fast, most notably against St Albans School, Mr Davies-Horne reported. “Prayag Gandhi started his formidable batting stats with 104 off 70 balls, whilst Sinha and Hassan continued to build on their strong partnership.
“Further records were broken as the side notched up a score of 207 for 1 against The John Lyon School, this time Rishab Banerjee demonstrating his skill with a bat, reaching 83 not out, whilst Ugan Pretheshan and Vishnu Anil looked dangerous bowling.
“The Middlesex cup run started with a narrowly contested game against Whitmore High School. With a change to the batting order, new faces such as Thivyan Arunendran and Kush Tailor held off the opposition, with the final runs coming in the last over from Haran Sritharan. The next round saw the U12 team show true character in the performance of the season, as they saw off a strong Swaminarayan School. Significant contributions with the bat came from Gandhi and Sinha, with a partnership of 152, whilst Sritharan and Arunendran looked promising with the ball.”
“A destructive bowling spell from Rohan Belavadi in the semi-final against Highgate put QE in a strong position.” Then, reprising their performances in previous games, Sinha, Gandhi and Hassan reached the total with ease.
The final, held at the neutral ground of Harrow St Mary, saw QE take on Newlands House. “Opting to bowl first on a hard wicket, Aaryan Patel and Krish Agarwal set to work on the batting order,” said Mr Davies-Horne. “Excellent spin-bowling and fielding” restricted Newlands to a score of 108. “An aggressive run chase led by the impressive Sinha, Gandhi and Hassan saw QE over the line with 5 overs to spare.
“This victory brought to an end a season that has not only been a fantastic one for the U12s, but has also shown strength across the board at QE, with four teams reaching their county cup finals or semi-finals – a well-deserved achievement of which all boys should be proud.”
Year 8 player Dilan Patel penned his own report on the U13s’ cup run, which began with “good batting from Bavan Gunaseelan and Karvith Ramesh” against Pinner High. Against The Swaminarayan School, Dilan himself played a key role in the “excellent bowling attack”, emerging with figures of 14/4, allowing QE’s batsmen to “knock off the total with ease.
“We then moved through to the semi-final, where we faced Belmont School, a side that had beaten us comfortably just weeks earlier in our regular season. This time, though, our batsmen knew how to face their fantastic opening bowlers and posted a total of 108-7, with Karvith Ramesh hitting a classy 45. We were put into pressurised situations, and that made us perform and focus even more intensely than we had ever done before. Our bowlers managed to get them all out for 95: we were in the final!”
Their opposition in the final was a “very talented” Merchant Taylors’ side, Dilan wrote, against whom they “came so close. Having batted the whole 25 overs in the searing heat – with Bavan Gunaseelan anchoring the innings from start to finish – we were just unable to put enough runs on the board and the opposition won the game with 3 overs to spare.”
He and his teammates had “put everything on the line” to reach the final and were “proud of their achievements”, Dilan concluded. “Coming so close to winning the trophy has only left us more determined to go one step further next year.”