Match Report:

Playing their first ever home-game, Stuttgart Cricket Eagles (SCE) chose to bat after winning the toss. The opening batsmen, Prasanna and Ravi, began the innings under cloudy conditions. TSG Ketsch's new ball bowler, Munir was a bit wayward in the beginning, but soon got into the 'swing' of things, making the ball move both ways. Wasey, the other new ball bowler had a tidy opening, keeping the batsmen in check. The openers batted cautiously and saw the first new ball through, amidst selective strokes (Ravi's cover drive to get off the mark was arguably the best ground stroke of the day) and loud lbw shouts. They even took some shine off the second new ball (which was agreed to be taken after 10 overs) on their way to a 54-run partnership. This was a tremendous effort on their part as it laid foundation for the following batsmen to play under less strenuous conditions.

However, after a solid opening stand, there was semblance of a collapse. Prasanna was the first to go, caught in the deep, trying to accelerate the scoring after a well-made 17. Sunil, the next batsman, failed to pick a slower ball from Afroz, and was trapped in front of the wickets. In the next over, Ravi was bowled by the left-arm seamer Arshad (who had an effective first spell). This brought Adnan, to the crease, who tried to build a partnership with Sridhar, but unfortunately hit out a bit too early in his innings, and returned to the pavilion, leaving the SCE innings precariously placed at 74 for 4. The team had lost 4 wickets within 20 runs, when Sridhar and Manikanth started putting up a partnership by nudging singles around. Once settled, the two batsmen upped the tempo, and the opposition's bowling figures started to take a beating. Manikanth in particular, made good use of the short boundaries, and lofted several balls to the fence. The 79-run partnership between the two right-handers ended when Sridhar, on 24, miscued a shot on the on-side, and brought an end to what promised to be a big innings from him.

On Sridhar's dismissal, Ananth stepped up to the wicket and immediately announced himself with a sixer. Manikanth in the meanwhile, hampered by a hamstring pull, needed Prasanna as a runner for him and the three co-ordinated the running rather well; With Ananth handing the strike over to Manikanth efficiently.  Not needing to run for himself,  Manikanth only dealt in boundaries, hammering a total of 7 sixers and 3 fours during his innings of 79. He finally was stumped when the score read 220, having played - just 46 balls! (Last heard, he's been getting calls from IPL teams in India.)

In another good effort, Ananth made a run-a-ball 32, with a few lusty blows into the creek behind the pavilion. However, the Ketsch spinner, Nadeem bowled a tight spell in the latter part of the innings, restricting the batsmen from hitting too many big shots. Sandeep, who came in 6-down, played well with the lower order, and attacked the medium-pacers on his way to a 27-ball 40. Ammar and Yogesh tried to get some quick runs as well, but had very few overs to play with. Manish, unfortunately could not face a ball, as the innings ended in the 40th over, with an impressive score of 268.

Set to chase 269, the Ketsch innings began as a mixed bag. Both the Stuttgart bowlers (Sunil and Manish) had the batsmen in trouble at times, while at others, the batsmen played some fine strokes to the boundary. There was a catch dropped in the slips off the bowling of Sunil and some close calls for the fielders under the helmet. There was excitement.. there was chatter. It was setting up to be a keen contest, when rain intervened and the match was abandoned after just 5.4 overs. The away team's score was 40 runs when the game was stopped.

The two teams shall share the points from this game, i.e. 4 points apiece. There is however, a possibility that the two teams might replay this match, if the league schedule permits.

It must be noted that the umpires did a good job in this game, with a lot of decisions being called right.