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Elbe Bowl invite from Dresden came in as a gracious reminder from Dresden, after our ex-captain Su had initiated it few years back. Naturally, we were all charged up to get the bowl back and then started the planning for the trip. Doodles, car rentals, youth hostels, joins and drops were in plenty, but finally on a beautiful Saturday morning, 9 of us started towards Dresden.
Journey on autobahn as expected was uneventful, except for Jon and Christian wandering towards Göttingen instead of Magdeburg, but eventually we all reached at the same time.
We agreed on a 35 over match for Saturday, won the toss and decided to field (probably scared of batting first on an unknown wicket after Bremen match). Anyway, it looked like a good toss to win as Safiullah and Sandeep got plenty of swing to keep the run rate to a miserly 2 or 3 runs per over. Credit also goes to openers, who did not give away their wicket easily and first breakthrough came in close to 15th over, when the skipper bowled a fast (by his standards) straight ball. Satya claims that batsman could not see the ball, but others think the batsman probably missed the ball while aiming to deposit it in the Elbe. 2 quick wickets fell after that including the left handed patient opener who had made a 50, and we were back. Then came in Siva and we started the sequence of dropping catches. We kept feeding and he kept obliging and we kept dropping, this continued till he made a very aggressive 50 and took the score to 250+. Scores are scores, but it was hearty to see good keeping from Vinay and Mark; inspiring fielding from Jon and Silva; some thundering throws from Toufiq.
Lunch arrived with delicious Indian curries and we ate and then that’s it. 6 hr drive – 35 overs game – good food – next should be bed, but we had to bat. Vinay and Satya opened the whole season, but Satya was already sleeping, hence Christian agreed to step in. Soon Sandeep had to go in and Satya had to wake up. Well, to keep it short, we were all enticed to hit big shots by some delicious looking in swing bowls, only to realize after playing that either the ball hit the stump or we spooned it up. But, the MAN – Jon stood up to the good bowling and played with patience. It paid off, as he was the only one to enjoy the spinners later on. Michael scored his first run and the childish joy on his face was great to see. Finally, Bianca had to step in the score the remaining 200 odd runs, but Emily would not stay away long from her and she had to gift her wicket. That was the end of a good match played with good spirit and ended with good spirits (beer).
Evening was poker and street parties and pubs, with local guidance from Siva.
I am sure we all enjoyed! Sunday was rained off and it was a damp end to a lively tour.
Elbe bowl still with Dresden, and it has to come back to us in 2015 🙂
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