CAPTAIN Sam Ogrizovic scored a superb maiden century as Kimberley stunned West Indian Cavaliers at Newdigate Street on Saturday.
In true David versus Goliath fashion, the hosts produced an outstanding victory which will live long in the collective Kimberley memory.
Ogrizovic asked the visitors to bat after winning the toss and there proceeded a very watchful start by openers Aqib Afzaal (80) and wicket-keeper Aaron Thomas (9) before Matt Wright (1-54) caused Thomas to play the ball onto his stumps; the score at 25-1 in the 11th.
Out walked Cavaliers’ captain Usman Afzaal (111 – 96 balls, ten fours, seven sixes) and suddenly batting looked effortless as he dispatched his first and second scoring shots for six and continued in the same vein throughout his innings.
Combined with brother Aqib he dominated the bowling as the pair compiled a huge 178-run stand, although it might have been different had he not been dropped on 83 with the score at 153.
Paul Riley (2-70) did eventually prize Usman out in the 43rd over as he snicked behind, leaving Cavaliers 203-2 and still poised for a big total.
Aqib Afzaal eventually fell in a brief flurry of wickets as Cavaliers went from 237-2 to 237-5 in the 45th and 46th overs.
Riley picked up another as Carl Blake caught Afzaal on the long-off boundary and then Chris Glover snuck in with two wickets to dispose of Rawait Khan (15) and Morteza Ali for a duck.
An unbeaten sixth wicket partnership of 45 between Alex Tudor and Patrick Gada (both 22*) rather undid Kimberley’s good work as they bludgeoned Cavaliers up to an imposing 282.
The total seemed even more daunting as Alex Robinson fell early in Kimberley’s reply to Tudor (3-72) with the score at 23 in the fifth over.
His departure didn’t fluster his opening partner Jon Terry (44) though, as batting at his buccaneering best he took on the Cavaliers attack, scything the ball to the boundary.
Unfortunately for Kimberley Terry’s pyrotechnics ended in the 11th over with the score at 66-2, but his early assault had given the run chase a fillip.
Ogrizovic (100) at this point was joined by Nick Langford (13) and they added 37 before Langford returned the ball to Zuben Faisal (3-32) who held it well; Kimberley 103-3 in the 23rd but by no means out of it.
Andy Platts (45), in his first game for the 1st XI for several years, strode to the crease and dug in with Ogrizovic to add 107 vital runs. It was a stand full of intelligent running and bloody-minded determination as the pair absorbed the pressure exerted by the Cavaliers who became tetchy in the field as the game edged towards Kimberley.
Advancing into the last ten overs found Kimberley needing 91 runs to win and they did it with drama aplenty.
It began when Platts’ obdurate innings was ended by Faisal in the 43rd over as he looked to advance the run-rate with the score at 210-4.
Ogrizovic was joined by Carl Blake (16) and the pair added a quick-fire 36 to keep the chase alive, both hitting several big shots.
Blake was trapped lbw soon after though by Usman Afzaal (1-61) leaving Kimberley at 246-5 and needing 37 from the last four overs.
Elation followed however as Ogrizovic worked the ball for a single to bring up his thoroughly deserved hundred (125 balls 9x4 2x6)
It was a real captain’s innings as he stood up to be counted when it mattered.
But the elation turned to despair as Tudor had Ogrizovic caught behind by Thomas and he had to depart with 33 required.
Cavaliers must have felt they could see the game out from here, but cometh the hour, cometh the man, and that man was Riley (29) who played a spectacular cameo.
With 30 needed from the final 12 balls he nearly pulled it off, as swinging from the hip he creamed one four and three huge sixes.
But the drama was not over as, scampering back for a second run in the final over, Riley was run-out, which left two balls to go and four to win.
Matt Wright (6*) only needed the one though as he flayed Tudor over the backward-point boundary to seal an amazing victory.
Credit as well to Dominic Wheatley (1*) who ran hard at the end throughout all the excitement.
The 2nd XI made it five wins from five as they skittled Newstead Abbey for just 96 to win by a healthy margin of 108 runs.
Kimberley registered 204-7 from their allotted overs, James Mann with 41 and Anuj Dal’s 35 not out being their most notable contributions.
Newstead were soon reduced to 49-5 as James Bailey (3-21) and Dominic Brown (2-31) ripped into the top order, reducing the home team to 49-5, before Mann (2-13) and Dal (1-5) showed off their all-round credentials and further piled on the misery.
Samuel Greig (24*) did offer some resistance from here but spinners Prab Sidhu (1-16) and Ian Wright (1-7) completed the rout in the 30th over.
The thirds delivered the best bowling performance of the day as they demolished a timid Basford Hall batting line-up for a measly 56.
Martyn Stackhouse lead the way recording yet another five-wicket hall and conceding just eleven runs in the process.
He was well supported by Alex Beale who picked up 3-18.
The Kimberley reply suffered a slight hiccup as they lost three wickets en-route to the victory target, but an assured 41* from Luke Tantum made sure they got home with relative ease.
THE fourths romped to a ten-wicket win over Flintham.
After being asked to bat Flintham could only manage 71 all out, with Kimberley’s Dan Huskinson bowling an amazing 6.1 over spell of wily medium pace which saw him collect remarkable figures of 6 for 6 including a hat-trick.
The Kimberley openers took just 14.3 overs to surpass the total.
Tim Wheatley commanded the innings with 46 not out, well supported by a controlled 22 not out from Chris Mozley.