The first ball of 2017/2018 cricket season will be bowled on Saturday the 18th of November 2017, at the Ansar ud deen cricket oval. The game which will be played between Ibadan Metropolitan Cricket Club (IMCC) and Pioneers Cricket Club, promises to be a cracker. The Club Cricket Committee division 2 league promises to be extraordinary this season, with a new sponsor on board, 3 Cricket ovals, 10 Teams, and just 1 trophy. The teams are as follows;
Ibadan Metropolitan Cricket Club (IMCC)- A closely knit side who had their taste of top-flight cricket will be looking to get back up this year. They have one of the most experienced sides in the league with a mixture of experienced and young cricketers. This team is definitely a team to watch out for. They will be planning to send a message to the other contenders with their first game against a weaker Pioneers Cricket Club, which happens to be the league opener.
Pioneers Cricket Club (PCC)- Pioneers have uncharacteristically struggled to bring young players through in recent years. They have also not had their old warhorses available for a number of their games. They will hope to be able to buck the trend of being one of the whipping boys in the second division starting with their first game against an IMCC side that has lost their fair share of youngsters too, it’s a must-win for them, so as to build their confidence level into the season.
Ibeju Lekki Cricket Club 2 (ILCC2)- Said to be the developmental side of the division one league defending champions they backed that claim up by producing the standout young cricketer last season who has been promoted to the senior side. The team is filled with an amazing number of youngsters learning their trade and awaiting promotion to the senior side.
Stallions Cricket Club (SCC)- Stallions were apparently rocked by news of their star bowler leaving to join a rival team. It will be interesting to see how they get on without him. They have been known to enjoy fast starts at the beginning of the season only to fizzle out towards the tail end Hopefully we get to see a sustained challenge for promotion this year.
Cricket Lovers Cricket Club (CLCC)- Had a good run last season and the season before, as they made it clear that they are not here to joke giving any team that comes their way a hard fight. Their first game is against the mighty Foundation Cricket Club (FCC) and their performance there just might give us an indication of what to expect this year.
1004 Stars Cricket Club (SCC)- Can someone please inform this new side what they are getting into?. Also an all Asian side that promises to make the league a very interesting one.
St Gregory College Old Boys Cricket Club (SGCOBCC)- Favorites for one of the promotion slots available this year, filled with top class players a number of whom have been acquired from rivals, a very committed coach. Joined the league last season, and already gained their ground. They reportedly have one of the best bowling attacks in the league.
Foundation Cricket Club (FCC)- As far as club cricket in Nigeria goes, Foundation is the biggest. A cricket team with a lot of history. Suffering the ignominy of relegation for the second time in recent history, the ‘Superdogs’ are expected to bounce right back up. Anything other than an immediate return should be seen as a failure.
Government College Ugheli Old Boys Cricket Club (GCUOBCC)- GCU have reportedly invested heavily in improving their squad. We may be about to witness an unprecedented level of the underdog story if everything goes to plan for them.
Igbobi College Old Boys CC – Let’s hope they put up a fight this year.
Let’s all gear up for what this season is about to bring to us. It promises to be all shades of fun, intense, competitive and lastly filled with surprises. All these in the spirit of cricket and good sportsmanship. Officials are set, grounds are set, logistics all covered up, players are getting ready. To the fans and cricket lovers, all road leads to AUD cricket oval on the 18th of November 2017, as IMCC takes on Pioneers.
Rivalries to watch out for this season;
- CLCC vs 1004 Stars (battle of the Asians)
- SGCOBCC vs ICOBCC (battle of the old boys)