TRNC Cricket Club overcome the UN
to get on Top Again!
Shock news received by the TRNC Cricket Club in the last few days, was met with the gritty determination to overcome setbacks, which has become the hall mark of this remarkable club.
Team manager Nigel Holman refused to be fazed by the UN’s decision that he says came completely out of the blue, to deny the Club access into the Buffer Zone directly from North Cyprus, despite having again uniquely gained permission from the Turkish Army to go through their base.
Nigel wouldn’t be drawn on the possible reasons, but other sources have suggested it could have been because of the increased security risks due to the continuing war in Syria or political difficulties resulting from the flare up over South Cyprus’s gas prospecting.
Keeping cricket growing in North Cyprus was where the Club wanted to focus. Forming a small ‘committee’ of 3 highly motivated people, they did what the Club does best and set about turning a negative into a strong positive. The thinking was “if we can’t play in South Cyprus or the UN Buffer Zone, then opposition needs to be tempted to the North. The only issue was the first game in the Cyprus League was only 3 days away.
Club pitches manager Tad Haigh rushed to meet up with the always helpful Girne Stadiums Manager Ogun Gontem and he supportively offered the Club’s preferred ground of the Pia Bella Stadium for the match last Sunday.
Not wanting a repeat of last time the Cyprus Cricket Association’s artificial pitch was delivered from the South and fell foul of TRNC customs, Holman urgently visited the Trade Ministry to apply for an import licence, a process he had been told would take many days. He said, everyone there understood our problem, were really brilliant and it was sorted out in literally a few hours. After negotiations with the Customs dept, next day, the pitch sailed through Metahan and arrived at Pia Bella, where the players we waiting to unload it.
Captain Danish Afridi had already got work, first finalising things with the Pia Bella Hotel where he is the night receptionist, then ensuring squad practice happend last Friday as usual. Once it became clear none of the Southern teams were able to make the trip, with a day to go, he managed to arrange a fixture against an alternative strong oppposition. Which was appropriately between Kyrenia & Famagusta, who have been bitter rivals since the 15th century when the Venetians controlled the North coast city and the Genoese the East Cyprus port.
Kyrenia Kings Captain Danish Afridi won the toss and put the Famagusta Warriors into bat. A solid start by Captain Sohail Khilji 23 and Bilal 20 promised to be the foundation of a defendable total. However, with excellent support from medium fast bowler, George’s Café’s Ali Adshad’s 3 for 17, Sajjad Kamal produced a devastating spell of 3 overs taking 6 for 12, ripping Famagusta apart. In including one for the record books, an extremely rare hat trick of LBW’s. The other wicket being picked up by the reliable Jan Walli, well known from Ego Bar. Disappointingly for the neutrals watching, the visitors managed to survive a meagre 13 overs and were dismissed for only 82.
Needing only 4.15/over, Kyrenia knew if they occupied the crease long enough, the target was well within their grasp. Their reply was steady throughout, with little of the huge hitting of previous matches. The pick of the knocks were a captain’s performance by Danish Afridi’s of 20 not out and new comer, Necat School teacher, Mike Roberts’ 16. For Famagusta, 2 for 20 from Yousaf Amin and one apiece for Zia Ullah, SohailKhilji and Luqman could do nothing to stop Kyrenia’s comfortable win with 4 over remaining.
DNB: Ali Adshad, Muhammad Ibrar Khan Afridi, Sajjad Kamal
Mayed 4-0-15-1, Ullah 3-0-15-0, Khilji 4-0-18-1, Amin 4-0-20-2, Luqman 1-0-11-0
Finally, an exhausted Nigel Holman, said it’s been a manic few days, but it’s all about making things happen and everyone connected with the Club have been tireless and totally brilliant.
If you would like any more TRNC Cricket information please contact: Nigel Holman 0533 8248999 firstname.lastname@example.org