Rann Star win final in super over

- June 8, 2023
| By : Khurram Habib |

The club, known as Madras Cricket Club in DDCA league, beat Carpediem India, a team of professionals, to win the Lala Raghubir Singh Hot Weather Cricket Trophy

Rann Star Cricket Club players with the winners' and man of the series trophies

Rann Star Cricket Club, or the Madras Cricket Club as it is known in Delhi and District Cricket Association (DDCA) league, won the 46th Lala Raghubir Singh Hot Weather Cricket title but not before it was stretched by Carpediem India to the super over in the final at the Modern School grounds on Wednesday.

The match was well within the grasp of eventual winners when opener Sarthak Ranjan was returning home early due to illness after hammering 69 off 40 balls in the chase of 262 that was scored by Carpediem India. Ranjan had scored big centuries for the club on Monday at the Dehradun Gold Cup and, on Tuesday here against Goat XI.

They needed about 70 in the last 10 overs to win the final and had five wickets in hand with Abhishek Goswami well-entrenched at the crease with a half-century.

However, what followed was hara-kiri. Rann Star kept losing wickets and only Deepak Punia, who scored (22), stayed put at the other end taking them within one run of victory.

However, Punia, known for his big hits and one who had scored 25-ball 68 a day ago, lobbed a miscued pull to short mid-wicket to tie the match. It is the first time that a match at this tournament has gone into a super over.

“I think our batsmen got very casual towards the end of the innings and threw their wickets away. I also should not have played that shot,” added Punia after the match.

Carpediem India total was based on Shantanu’s century. The Meerut batsman, playing as a professional for the team like most others, earned the best batsman of the tournament award, having aggregated 326 runs.

Shantanu scored 108 in 101 balls and was the only one to bat with confidence as wickets fell around him. Only Uttar Pradesh Ranji veteran Akshdeep Nath (38) contributed something of note as Carpediem India innings folded in 38.3 overs.

The wrecker-in-chief for Rann Star was pace bowler Saksham Sharma. He took 5/31.

“It feels great that the team won the final because of me. My plan was to stop as many runs as possible to get the wickets,” said the 26-year-old who represented Jammu and Kashmir at the under-25 in the 2021-2022 season.

He took two wickets early and then came back to take three at the end. He was declared bowler of the tournament for his nine wickets, plus one in the super over.

Saksham Sharma took five wickets in the final

Both Punia and Vaibhav Kandpal, who earned man of the series award for his 307 runs and two wickets, opened for Rann Star in the super over. Kandpal survived a chance as he was dropped at long-off on the third ball of the over. Rann Star had just four runs in the first three balls. But then he launched a six off a full toss towards mid-wicket and then guided one to four towards backward square-leg. He then took a single off a wide before Punia hit the last ball for six.

The target of 22 was too much and only two no-balls provided brief excitement. There were two sixes for Carpediem India but those were not enough as they lost by six runs.

“We were winning on both occasions (in main match and in super over) easily. But the no-balls created some interest in the super over,” said Sharma.

Veteran coach Gurcharan Singh, who was given the Padma Shri this year, handed the trophy to the winners and runners-up.