Notts Sport and ICC Europe support Macedonia's first Twenty20 match
ICC European Development Program provided the equipment and Notts Sport provided the pitch for the first Twenty20 game to be played in macedonia.
The whole day event, co-organised by BBG member Phalanx Capital, comprised of three Twenty/20 matches.
The first match was underway after the Director for Youth & Sport, Ivica Georgievski, tossed the coin. The visiting British Army KFOR team won the toss and opted to field first.
The opposition, HMA XI, put in a good innings with 139 for 7, with a star performance by Kristin Hancock, visiting from the HAC CC, declaring after 45 runs. Coming in to bat, the KFOR team performed strongly before a series of players were bowled out leaving a very exciting end to the game…144 for 9...1 over and 3 bowls to go…bowler, Kristin Hancock, took the middle wicket and forced KFOR to field their last man...with another two runs needed to win the pressure on the fielders was on. A great hit from the batsman sent the ball into the air but some excellent fielding by Hugh Creal prevented KFOR from scoring an extra run. A valiant effort by the HMA XI was brought to an end when star of the match, CSM John Knight connected with the ball and hit it for six to claim victory.
The player of the match trophy was awarded to CSM John Knight by HMA Chatterton Dickson who addressed the crowd with plenty of smiles and applause for the players who excelled themselves in putting on a thrilling game.
To get the tension going for the second match of the day, the Ghurkha's XI vs. Mixed XI, the Ghurkha's put on an excellent display of military prowess with the Presentation of the Kukri.
The Ghurkha's, who were introduced to cricket only very recently, put up an amazing team and scored a superb victory over the Mixed XI. It was a consensus on the day that the Ghurkha's XI were a spectacular team and thoroughly deserved a win…although the Mixed XI put up a great fight they were all out for 63 vs. 120 for off 12 overs.
Player of the Match was awarded to RFN Chandrakumar Limbu by Prasad Chamarty, who was an invaluable contribution to the day himself with his talented and diplomatic umpiring expertise.
After an excellent open-air lunch, hosted by the Stone Bridge Hotel, the big game of the day was underway, the Macedonian Invitation XI vs. HMA XI. The MK XI started out batting and were strong throughout leaving a very difficult 182 for 8 to beat. Declarations from Nabeel Bhaati and Vasudeva Keerti after 49 & 46 runs respectively showed the strength of this team and their aspirations of victory for Macedonia. The HMA XI tried their best to overcome the high scoring MK XI but, although having done very well, fell a little short with 159 for 9 when the 20 Overs were up.
Player of the Match was undeniably Stefan Van De Merwe who made some very big connections while batting to retire after scoring 42 runs and then proceeded to perform spectacularly in the hot sun as wicket-keeper, keeping the pressure on the opposition throughout. The trophy was presented by Kanat Chamarty from Solrhibus who were sponsors of the days' trophies.
To top the day off we were honoured with the presence of the Speaker of the Government, Ivica Bocevski, who presented the prestigious award of Player of the Day to Nabeel Bhaati whose all-round performance and contribution to the day was outstanding and noted by everyone.
Whilst there were a great many heroes during the day it is impossible to give them all a mention here but it must be said that this event would not have been possible without the efforts of many, many people.
A great many thanks go to all that helped from The Agency for Youth & Sport, NATO HQ Skopje, KFOR UK NSE Slim Lines, International Cricket Council, European Cricket Council Development Fund, The Royal Air Force, The British Army, The British Embassy Skopje, The Macedonian Government and all the individuals who helped make the day the success that it was.
Additionally, the BBGM would also like to offer its thanks to the tremendously generous support of the sponsors who did so much to make the day happen and without which, the whole event would have never taken place…