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 Armaan Kapoor
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Armaan Kapoor

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2022-07-19

Ontario Triumphs Over BC To Be Crowned National T20 Champions!

In a match that was a fitting conclusion to an impressively staged five-day tournament and worthily competitive as a Final, Ontario defeated British Columbia by 5 wickets to claim the coveted title of Canadian National 2022 T20 Champions. Ontario’s very strong batting line-up, comprised as it was of a plethora of Canadian National team batsmen, was in the end just that much too strong to endure any insurmountable challenges in surpassing BC’s posted, decidedly insufficient, 20-overs total of 151-4.

The highlight of BC’s 151-4 was yet another delightful half-century from the Canadian National team’s recently debuted opening batsman, Aaron Johnson. The Jamaican-born Johnson who made his Canadian debut in a recent July 7 50 Over friendly match against Nepal, struck 7 fours in his 40-ball fifty. He and Anoop Raini (18) combined for an opening partnership of 51 that was made in 7.4 overs. Johnson then added 31 with Bhupinder Singh (23), before he was eventually deceived by Parveen Kumar’s clever slower delivery to be caught and bowled, almost immediately after he’d completed his half-century celebrations.

BC’s hard-hitting skipper, National Canadian batsman Ravi Singh, tried desperately to provide his team’s innings with the impetus necessary to achieve a sufficiently challenging first-strike total. Singh’s aggressively struck 38, with 5 fours included, only required 21 balls. It proved to be in vain though as he departed, bowled by Shahbaz Kayani off the fourth ball of the 20th over, with the score on 149.

Shahbas Kayani returned the best figures among the six Ontario bowlers used, all of whom were relatively expensive. He claimed 1/18 from his 3 overs.

Set an undaunting 152/20 overs for victory, Ontario’s openers Rayyan Pathan and Shubham Sharma went about their task as if there were only half that many available balls to be faced. Sharma was a virtual non-striking spectator as Pathan, the tournament’s leading run-scorer, carved BC’s opening bowlers to every part of the King City outfield. 

Pathan struck 2 sixes and 3 fours, 24 boundary runs in total in his 12-ball innings of 25. Had he not been caught at long-off somewhat needlessly attempting to hit yet another boundary off the fourth ball of the third over, the first three of which had produced 6, 4 and 6, BC’s posted 151 run total might indeed have been surpassed within under 10 overs.

Sharma (3) perhaps attempting to duplicate Pathan’s fireworks was dismissed soon after, caught by Bhupinder Singh off the bowling of Udaybir Singh Walia with the score on 32. Ontario’s skipper Navneet Dhaliwal, whose role with the Canadian National team is identical, however steadied the innings with a typically composed knock of 27 that was made off of 23 balls. Dhaliwal’s innings was punctuated by 1 six and 3 fours. 

Dhaliwal’s was the third wicket to fall, departing as he did with the score on 86/3-9.5 overs. He and Armaan Kapoor (40) had added 54 for the third wicket. 

Kapoor’s useful 40 was made off of 27 balls and included 5 fours. After Kapoor fell, bowled by Newab Singh off the third ball of the thirteenth over, there was the quick further loss of Parveen Kumar whose short-lived innings of 4 lasted only 6 balls. Kapoor fell with the score on 118/5 after 14.1 overs raising BC hope of q come from behind victory. 

Whatever hopes the BC players and their visiting supporters may have harboured for such an unlikely victory were effectively squashed by an unbeaten 34-runs sixth wicket partnership between Canadian National team all-rounders Harsh Thakar and Saad Bin Zafar. Thakar scored 29* off 21 balls with one six and a four. Zafar’s contribution was 21* off 16 balls with 2 fours.

The pair saw Ontario home to victory without any further stress, to the gleeful delight of their fellow team members. Following the match’s conclusion there were presentations of numerous awards to the tournament’s outstanding players, as well of course the Championship trophy to Ontario’s captain Navneet Dhaliwal. 

Ontario’s Rayyan Pathan who scored 254 runs from 5 innings at an average of 63.50 and at a strike rate of 145.14 was named the tournament’s CO-MVP alongside Aaron Johnson of BC. Johnson’s 208 tournament runs were scored from 6 innings at an average of 34.67 with a 139.50 strike rate.

Earlier in the day, Quebec 133/8-20 overs had persevered over Nova Scotia 121/6-20 to claim a narrow twelve runs victory and third place in the tournament’s final standings. Quebec captain Shreyas Movva again provided the backbone of his team innings with a top score of 34, made from 45 balls with 5 fours. Zeeshan Ansari 2/17-2, Shadab Ahmed 2/19-4 and Rahul Vashishtha 2/25-3 were Nova Scotia’s top wicket-takers.

Chasing 134 for victory in 20 overs at a run rate of under 7 runs per over, Nova Scotia came close but not close enough, agonizingly falling short of their victory total by just 12 runs. Neel Patel’s ever 50, made off 34 balls with 1 six and 9 fours was the top score of the Nova Scotia innings. Bowling for Quebec, Ramki Gangasani 2/23-3 was the top wicket-taker,   

The fixtures and results from all matches can be viewed on the Cricket Canada App. 

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2022-07-12

British Columbia (BC) and Ontario both secured double victories in Canada National T20 Championships opening day fixtures to race to the top of their respective Group standings with perfect records of two wins from as many matches played. Teams from all ten of Cricket Canada’s Member Provinces, Alberta, British Columbia, New Brunswick, Newfoundland, Nova Scotia, Ontario, Quebec, Prince Edward Island, and Saskatchewan are competing for National T20 Championship honours in the July 11-15, 2022 tournament being held at King City’s Maple Leaf Cricket Club.

British Columbia (214/4-20) got its Group A campaign off to a perfect start, strolling to a comfortable 53 runs victory in its opening encounter against New Brunswick (161/7-20). BC, however, faced a much sterner challenge from Saskatchewan who came very close to staging the tournament’s first major upset. Responding to Saskatchewan’s posted total of 111/8-20. BC found the going tough, losing key wickets at regular intervals before their ninth-wicket two Singhs combination: Ravinderpal (13*) and Newah (1*), eventually saw them home to victory.

In the other Group A opening day match, Newfoundland (112/6-20) proved to be no match for Quebec (113/0-20) losing by 10 wickets. The victory left Quebec with an also perfect record of one win from its only Day 1 match.

While BC was asserting its Group A dominance, Ontario was doing much the same in Group by registering almost lopsided victories in both of its opening day matches.  A 105 runs century opening stand between Shubham Sharma (55) and Rayyan Pathan (47) was the foundation for Ontario’s very comfortable 68 runs victory over Nova Scotia in its opening fixture. 

Batting first Ontario posted 158/3 off its 20 overs, the innings piloted by Sharma’s half-century which was made off just 37 balls with one six and 8 fours. Pathan’s 47 was somewhat less aggressive, requiring 48 balls and including 7 boundaries. 

Chasing a 159-run victory target at a required run rate of just under 8 runs per over, Nova Scotia was never in the hunt getting off to a disastrous start losing their first three wickets, Amit Joshi (4), Neel Patel (4) and Daksh Talwar (0) within the first two overs with only 8 runs on the board. Further wickets fell at regular intervals until the Nova Scotians were eventually bundled out for 89. Losing their final wicket off the fourth ball of the 20th over to fall 69 runs short of their victory target.

Ontario’s second opening day match, against Manitoba, yielded a similarly comfortable victory for the tournament hosts. Batting first Ontario posted an impressive 183/3-20 on the back of Rayyan Pathan’s belligerent 55 balls 86 which included 4 sixes and 8 fours. Armaan Kapoor also chipped in with 51 that was made off of 35 balls, with 2 sixes and 4 fours.

In reply Manitoba, despite Vasu Shah’s 60 balls 67 which included 2 sixes and 5 fours, found Ontario’s bowling attack led by Canadian National pacer Dilon Heyliger (3/23-3) too difficult a proposition. Only managing to reach 119/8 at the end of the allocated 20 overs to fall short of their target by 64 runs.

The Championship’s opening day matches produced half centuries from Ontario’s Rayyan Pathan (88), his teammates Shubham Shama (55) and Armaan Kapoor (51), Quebec’s Yashwanath Reddy (73), New Brunswick’s Divank Satwani (71), BC’s Bhupinder Singh (69), Manitoba’s Vasu Shah (67) and Newfoundland’s Manik Arora (55). Among the bowlers British Columbia’s Aaron Johnson had the day’s very best figures of 4/12-2. There were also three wickets hauls for Saskatchewan’s Sarmad Anwar (3/14-4), Alberta’s Rommel Shahzad (3/18-4) and Ontario’s Dilon Heyliger (3/23-3).

The Championships will continue with its July 12 Day 2 fixtures featuring six matches: Quebec vs Saskatchewan, Nova Scotia vs Manitoba, Newfoundland vs British Columbia, PEI vs Ontario, New Brunswick vs Saskatchewan, and Alberta vs Manitoba. The fixtures, results and statistics for all matches are available on the Cricket Canada App.      

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2022-07-07

Stand-in wicket-keeper Shreyas Movva’s unbeaten half-century proved to be the difference-maker as Canada recovered from a shaky start to secure a comfortable 83 runs victory over the visiting Nepal in the July 6th friendly 50 overs match played at King City’s Maple Leaf Cricket Club. Movva’s 50 balls 50, which included 2 sixes and 3 fours, rescued the Canadian innings from a perilous position of 118-9 (39 overs) to an eventual 50 overs total off 188/9. It was a total that would prove to be too high a mountain to climb for Nepal’s batsmen, who folded easily to be all out for 105 in the 40th over (39.2).

In front of a lively crowd of scores of their Canadian-Nepalese community supporters, Nepal won the toss and invited Canada to bat at the start of the second of two scheduled friendly encounters between the rival International Cricket Council Associate Member countries. Persistent rain had completely washed out the previous day’s, July 5th first match, that had also been scheduled to be played at King City.

Nepal’s decision to field first seemed to have paid off immediate dividends when Canada’s current National batting star, Rayyan Pathan was out bowled by Kishor Mahato for just 1 off the fourth ball of the very first over. Following Pathan’s shock dismissal newcomer opener Aaron Johnson, making his very first appearance in Canadian National colours, however, staged a minor recovery by adding 39 with Bhupinder Singh for the second wicket.

Singh’s departure, bowled by Mohamad Alam for 10 at the start of the 11th over, however, triggered a mini procession as further wickets fell with increasing regularity as Canada slumped to 118-9 by the start of the 30th over. Johnson became the first of Nepal’s now internationally famous captain Sandeep Lamichhane’s 3 victims, lbw for 44 (55 balls, 8 fours). He was quickly followed by the dismissals of Akhil Kumar (12), Harsh Thaker (0), Udaybir Wallia (16), stand-in captain Saad Bin Zafar (3), Armaan Kapoor (10) and Salman Nazar (0) as six further wickets fell in the space of 28 overs for just an additional 75 runs.

Movvas batting alongside the obviously much better talented than an average number 10 Ammar Khalid, then rescued the innings with a boundary studded unbeaten 10th wicket 70 runs partnership. Khalid’s 38 balls 30* included 1 six and 3 fours.

Bowling for Nepal skipper Lamichhane was, as expected, the main wicket-taker capturing 3/31 from his 10 allocated overs. He was ably supported by Dipendra Airee who took 2/33-9.

Chasing a very gettable 189 runs victory target at a comfortable required run rate of just about 4 runs per over, Nepal was never even in the chase. The Canadian bowling attack of Ammar Khalid (2/13-6), Salman Nazar (2/31-9.2), Rommel Shahzad (2/35-10), Saad Zafar (2/13-6) and Harsh Thaker (2/13-8) proved too effective a combination, completely bundling out the entire Nepal innings for just 105 runs in 39 overs. There were two ducks among five single digit scores in the Nepal innings for which Dev Khanal’s paltry 26 was the top score.

The Canadian team’s resounding victory over Nepal should serve as a most timely morale booster as it prepares for its July 25th – August 7, 2022 hosting of the ICC’s Challenge League 2023 World Cup Qualifier. Canada will play hosts to Denmark, Malaysia, Qatar, Vanuatu and Singapore during the two-week tournament, all matches for which will be played at King City’s Maple Leaf Cricket Club.

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2021-09-15

Hiral Patel (70) Aaditya Vardarajan (60), Udaybir Singh Walia (56), Shreyas Movva (53) all struck half-centuries while Rommel Shahzad 4/12 (4) was the pick of the bowlers as Day 1 of the three-day, September 13-15, 2021 Canadian National Men’s T20 Cricket Championships, got under-way at King City’s Maple Leaf Cricket Club. The four scheduled Day 1 matches featured the Sheilds vs Stallions; Fire vs Fury; Fire vs Stallions and Fury vs Shields.

The Shields vs Stallions match was a bit of a one-sided affair. Batting first Shields posted 122/9 off 20 overs, with Sukhpreet Khohar (32) and Canadian National team captain Navneet Dhaliwal (31) as the top scorers. Bowling for the Stallions, Rommel Shazad had the entire day’s most outstanding figures of 4/12-4. 

Chasing 123 for victory, the Stallions reached their target for the loss of only two wickets. Udaybir Singh Walia (56) and Shreya Movva (53) both posting half-centuries in an unbeaten 116 run third-wicket partnership that took the Stallions to their very comfortable victory.

Summarized Scores: Shields 122/9 (20 Ovrs) , Khohar 32, Dhaliwal 31, Shazad 4/12-4; Stallions 126/2 (18.3 Ovrs) Walia 56. Movva 53, Stallions won by 8 wickets.

While the Shields and Stallions were locking horns in their opening round fixture, Fury and Fire were also similarly engaged. Batting first Fury only managed to reach 105/9 (20) with Hamza Tariq, 30 as the only score of note. Meet Patel 3/10-3 was the Fire’s main wicket-taker, while Dosanjh claimed 2/13-3.

Chasing 105 for victory, Fire cruised to their target on the back of an unbeaten 50 ball 60 not out from their opening batsman Aaditya Vardarajan. Nicholas Manohar was also unbeaten on 19 as Fire ended on 107/2 (18.4) to claim victory by 8 wickets.

Summarized Scores; Fury 105/9 (20 Ovrs) Tariq 30, Meet Patel 3/10-3, Dosanjh 2/13-3; Fire 107/2 (18.4 Ovrs) Vardarajan 60. Fire won by 8 wickets.

Match 3 of the three National Championships’ Day 1 featured the Stallions against Fire in yet another lopsided encounter, Batting first the Stallions posted a formidable 164/4 of its 20 overs. Hiral Patel’s 56 ball 70 at the top of the order was the backbone of the innings. He also received some solid support from Armaan Kapoor’s aggressive 33 ball 46.

Set 165 to win in 20 overs at a very challenging required run rate of 8.25 runs per over, Fire’s batsmen were never in the hunt. Wickets fell regularly and Kavian Naress' patient 25 ball 31 was eventually the only score of note. Fire ended on 101/7 off its 20 overs. Hiral Patel had excellent figures of 3/9-3, while Rommel Shahzad 2/14-4 was almost as effective.

Summarized Scores: Stallions 164/4 (20 Ovrs) Patel 70, Kapoor 36; Fire 101/7 (20 Ovrs) Naress 25, Hiral Patel 3/9-3, Shahzad 2/14-4. Stallions won by 63 runs.

The final Day 1 match featured Fury against Shields in a highly competitive, low scoring encounter. Fury batting first was bundled out for 97 in 18.3 overs. Rodrigo Thomas’34 ball 30 was the only score worth noting. Kanwar Mann took 3/12-4 and there were also two-wicket hauls for Jatinder Matharu 2/12-3, Dilon Heyliger 2/17-3.3 and Farhan Malik 2/19-3.

Chasing a paltry 94 for victory Shields struggled initially losing wickets at 2, 3, 15, 36 and 38. From 38-5, they recovered, however, to 67 without further loss thanks to a 29 run sixth-wicket partnership between Bhupinder Singh (37) and Jatinder Matharu (13). 

The subsequent losses of Singh, Kanwar Mann (0) first ball and eventually Matharu at 67 and 79 respectively must have certainly caused some panic within the Shields dugout. Dillon Heyliger (22*) and Trevor Manoosingh (5*), however, saw them safely to victory without any further loss.

Summarized Scores: Fury 93/10 (20 Ovrs) Thomas 30, Mann 3/12-4. Shields 97/8 (19.3 Ovrs) Singh 37, Shahbaz Kayani 3/18-4. Shields won by 2 wickets.

The Championships' Tuesday, September 14 Day 2 will feature two 10;30 am start-time matches: Fire vs Shields and Fury vs Stallions. These will be followed by the Shields vs Stallions and Fire vs Fury matches bots of which are scheduled to start at 2:30 pm.

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2020-02-18

Cricket Canada has announced the names of a strong fourteen member Men’s Senior Team Squad to participate in the 2020 International Cricket Council (ICC) Cricket World Cup Challenge League A. The Tournament, which will be a part of the qualification process for the 2023 ICC Word Cup, will be held in Malaysia from March 14 – 27, 2020. Canada will play fifty 0vers matches against ICC Division A country teams representing Denmark, Qatar, Singapore, Vanuatu and hosts Malaysia during the Tournament.

Canada’s 14 member ICC 2020 Challenge Cup Squad will be captained by its experienced opening batsman Navneet Dhaliwal (pictured). In 30 List A (fifty-overs) matches played to date in Canadian colours, Dhaliwal has scored 1027 runs at an impressive 39.50 average, with two centuries and five half centuries. Nitish Kumar, Abrash Khan, Ravinderpal Singh, Harsh Thaker, Varun Sehdev and Srimantha Wijeyeratne, will provide batting support to Dhaliwal. 

Canada’s bowling attack will be centred around the front line spin of experienced campaigners Saad Bin Zafar, Nikhil Dutta, Salman Nazar and Shahid Ahmedzai. They will be ably supported by the part-time spin offerings of Nitish Kumar and Dhaliwal himself. Romesh Eranga and Faizal Jamkhandi are the only two seamers included in the squad, the wicket-keeping duties for which will be shared by Srimantha Wijeyeratne and Armaan Kapoor.

Experienced South African Amarinder Bhinder will be the Head Coach for the Canadian Squad, which will be managed by Carlos Ragoonath. Surendra Seeraj (Assistant Coach), Daulat Khan (Asst Coach/Analyst) and Tejash Patel (Physio) will be the other members of the Canadian Squad’s management team.

The full squad (in alphabetical order) with their respective roles is as follows:

Navneet Dhaliwal (RHB) (Capt), Shahid Ahmedzai (SLA), Nikhil Dutta (ROS), Romesh Eranga (LMF), Faizal Jamkhandi (RMF), Armaan Kapoor (WK/BAT), Abraash Khan (RHB), Nitish Kumar (RHB), Salman Nazar (SLA), Varun Sehdev (RHB), Ravinderpal Singh (RHB), Harsh Thaker (RHB), Srimantha Wijeyeratne(WK/BAT) and Saad Zafar (LHB).

Amarinder Bhinder (Head Coach), Carlos Ragoonath (Manager), Surendra Seeraj (Asst Coach), Daulat Khan (Asst Coach/Analyst), Tejash Patel (Physio)









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