Beijing Cricket Club arrived in Shanghai looking to gain revenge for the China Cup result in 2013. Following the welcome dinner on Saturday evening at The Sticky Wicket, the Shanghai Dragons arrived at the SRFC to be met with a damp outfield and drizzle in the air.
Fortunately the rain stopped and the drainage ensured that only 30 minutes were lost, with the game reduced to 45 overs.
Having won the toss, Shanghai elected to bowl first hoping to make the most of the conditions, and waiting the the ground to dry out later. The Beijing batsmen came out looking to play their shots which combined with probing bowling made for an interesting opening salvo with runs and wickets in the opening 5 overs as Beijing reached 33/2. Beijing then continued to attack, as Chiranjaya got his eye in and raced to a quickfire 77 putting on 59 partnerships with skipper Kavisha and keeper Wareham. Shanghai hoped that his dismissal to a great catch would slow the run rate, but it merely brought Man of the Match Andrew Sobal to the crease who entertained all with a brutal attack racing to 95 with ten 4s and five 6s. Ably supported by a stubborn innings from Wareham these two put on 130 in very short time. Sobol fell agonizingly short of a deserved century – caught well in the deep by Wotton. Shanghai finished quickly, with Yadav taking a hat-trick all caught by Wotton in the deep.
276 scored meaning Shanghai would have to bat long and deep to chase this score down. Opener Lyons looked comfortable immediately, but opening partner Khattak had picked up a niggle. Bad balls were put away, but there were occasional ripping deliveries that took wickets combined with rash shots as the batsmen looked to keep on top of the run rate. Only Wotton and Cumming were able to build innings combining patience and an ability to run hard and put bad balls away. Both fell short of half-centuries as the Dragons failed to build sufficient momentum to put together a serious challenge, enventutally falling short by 75 runs as we were bowled out for 201.
Beijing fully deserved their victory, out-batting and out-bowling the hosts. Manoj Mehta reluctantly handed the trophy back to Beijing. Man of the Match was Andrew Sobol for his match winning innings, whilst the Damien Johnson Trophy for the spirit of cricket was awarded to Dayne Wotton of Shanghai.
A great weekend on and off the field, and we look forward to our return trip to Beijing next year to regain the China Cup