Bulletin by Max Minor.
Hamburg, 9 August 2014. Renegades 215 all out (Subair 63*, Arun 49, Aswin 17, Safiullah 14) beat Pilgrims 121 all out (Keith 45, Mark B. 16*, Matthew 13) by 94 runs on a wet field in otherwise fair conditions and retain the ERDINGER Alkoholfrei Kontinental Cup for the second year running. These are the dry facts of another beer-infused contest between THCC Rot-Gelb Renegades from Hamburg and Heligoland Pilgrims from all over the world on the Hamburg Polo Ground. Once again, more than 1.000 visitors had come to witness the unique spectacle.
The first half hour of the match took place in the central show arena of the British Flair lifestyle event. Against the background of running live commentary, spectators saw the following sporting highlights: Pilgrims spearhead opener Gareth taking two wickets in his first two overs, Pilgrims veteran captain Mark B. even taking two in only one over, a Pilgrims sure hands wishing to remain undisclosed catching the otherwise indestructible Renegades captain Vinay on 1 run, a controversial leg before wicket-decision in favour of Pilgrims original vice president Steve, a revocation of a dismissal when the ball hit the stumps but the bails did not fall, and a couple of boundaries by Renegades openers Kamaldin and Subair. What more can you ask for from a centre-stage performance?
When the shipping forecast stopped the show after almost 7 overs and the players relocated to the northern cricket field, Renegades were approximately 5 wickets down and their score was not really worth mentioning. The huge total of the Renegades at the end of their allotted 20 overs was only possible because stalwart Arun was in top form, young talent Subair was allowed to bat again against the less confident Pilgrims bowlers and the wayward taped tennis ball contributed a plethora of extras.
So the Pilgrims had a mountain to climb in their innings. This was made even more difficult by some exceptionally tight Renegades
bowling, notably by Safiullah who managed a wicketmaiden-over, but also by Kamaladin and Aswin. At 53 for 7 after 8 overs, with Matthew the only Pilgrim to have left a marked impression on the tally, some of the Renegades expected the match to be over within a few balls. They had apparently not reckoned with the superb South African partnership of Keith and Mark B. who stayed at the
crease for more than 10 further overs and more than doubled the Pilgrims’ score. Alas, when Keith was unluckily caught behind, the last couple of overs merely yielded another couple of runs.
Still, both teams had staged a splendid cricket demonstration and all players certainly deserved as much ERDINGER beer as they could stomach. Aswin’s mother presented the Cup to Renegades’ winning captain Vinay in glorious sunshine. So at the
end of the day this was not only British lifestyle at its best, it was a piece of particularly great cricket entertainment in Hamburg – courtesy of THCC Rot-Gelb and, of course, Heligoland Pilgrims.
THCC Rot-Gelb Renegades: Vinay V.*, Safiullah A., Ali H., Kamaladin K., Thomas M.+, Arun R., Aswin S., Subair R., Niklas T. (Smally), Nag X.
Heligoland Pilgrims: Mark B.*, Steve A., Liam C., Gareth D., Christian H., Moritz H., Keith M., Sven P., Komal S., Frank T.+, Matthew W.