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By Peter Della Penna in King City, Ontario (on Twitter)
DreamCricket.com's coverage on site from Canada during the 2013 Auty Cup tour is sponsored by New Inning Foundation.
Scorecard powered by New Inning Foundation
Canada stand-in captain Damodar Daesrath punished USA for a missed chance on 7 by notching 109 off 104 balls in Canada’s total of 252, but a steady drizzle that began late in Canada’s innings grew progressively worse and play was eventually called off before USA had a chance to reply on Saturday in the lone 50-over contest at the 2013 Auty Cup tour in King City, Ontario.
"It's part of the game. You take some, you drop some," USA offspinner Abhimanyu Rajp said after the game. "The thing is you want to take more than you drop. We took some too and we dropped a couple that cost us a bit but come tomorrow everyone wants to take the catch."
"With the spinners bowling most of the overs, I think we did well to restrict them to  after the middle overs set that they had. I hoped that it didn't rain because being a small ground and the kind of batsmen that we have, we were confident that we could chase it down."
The host side won the toss and elected to bat first with three changes to their lineup from the two-day match on Thursday and Friday. Rizwan Cheema, Cecil Pervez and Trevin Bastiampillai made way for Henry Osinde, Jeremy Gordon and Ashish Bagai. USA also made three changes with Steven Taylor serving his one-match suspension while Naseer Jamali sat out injured and Usman Rehman was rested. Nicholas Standford, Mital Patel and Adrian Gordon entered the starting lineup in their places.
The match had a helter-skelter start with Gordon’s first delivery resulting in five wides as part of an 11-ball opening over that went for 19 runs. Mital Patel opened from the opposite side at the Pavilion End and struck on his very first delivery as Nitish Kumar chipped a full delivery straight to Karan Ganesh at midwicket to bag a golden duck. Ganesh came on to bowl offspin in place of Gordon for the third over and snagged a wicket on his fourth ball. Usman Limbada had come forward to defend but a delivery with extra bounce clipped his back elbow and fell down onto the stumps to dismiss him for 12.
Ruvindu Gunasekera got an early life on 17 when he was shelled by Ganesh at cover off Mital but only added six more runs before Mital claimed him with a full length delivery that beat him for pace on an attempted drive to make it 46 for 3.
Daesrath came to the crease to join Bagai, who was making his first appearance for Canada since the 2011 ICC World Cup. Both players had nervy starts and each offered a chance that USA failed to cling onto. The score was 57 for 3 in the 12th when Daesrath, on 7, gave a thin edge off Ganesh that Dodson couldn’t hold on to. Three overs later, Bagai was on 8 when he opened the face of the bat to guide a Danial Ahmed delivery through third man. Instead he sent the ball straight to Ryan Corns at slip but the chance was spilled and Canada ended the 16th on 65 for 3.
Image (above) - Damodar Dasraeth strikes a full delivery over mid off for two runs on his way to reaching 109 off 104 balls vs. USA. [Courtesy: Peter Della Penna/DreamCricket.com]
The pair cruised through the second hour of play, adding 114 in 18 overs between the two drinks breaks. Daesrath was much more aggressive than Bagai and reached his 50 off 68 balls in the 32nd by clubbing Ganesh for a six over long on. Bagai was somewhat rusty early on but eventually started to time the ball better and made his half-century in 97 balls by stroking his fourth boundary through cover off USA captain Timil Patel. Canada arrived at the drinks break with the score 181 for 3 and looked certain to make a minimum of 300.
Play resumed just as a steady drizzle arrived over the ground and two overs later Daesrath offered a straightforward return chance to Timil Patel on 85 but the bowler shelled it reaching to his left. USA’s captain injured his bowling hand in the process and was unable to field for the rest of the innings. Corns was called on to finish the 37th over in place of his captain and managed to finally end the fourth wicket stand at 148 when Bagai was struck on the toe after missing a dab to third man and was given leg before for 56.
Daesrath reached his century off 100 balls with a paddle to fine leg for 2 off Corns in the 43rd. Daesrath and Jimmy Hansra then spent the rest of the 43rd chasing Corns from the attack as each batsman hit a six straight down the ground to make the score 227 for 4 with seven overs remaining.
Image (right) - Damodar Daesrath raises his bat after reaching his century as rain drops fall around him at Maple Leaf CC. [Courtesy: Peter Della Penna/DreamCricket.com]
However, the wicket of Daesrath to start the 44th sparked a remarkable fall for Canada as they lost their last six wickets for 25 runs. Daesrath tried to crush what would have been a seventh six over long on, but didn’t get enough lift on the delivery from Ahmed and drilled it flat to Corns on the rope at head height. Baidwan was dropped on 0 by Rajp at cover in the next over, but failed to make the most of his reprieve and was bowled by Ganesh on the very next delivery. Ganesh claimed his third wicket two overs later when Junaid Siddiqui top edged a pull toward deep square leg where Standford ran in from the rope to take a catch on his knees to make it 249 for 7 at the end of 47.
Rajp prevented the tail from teeing off by striking three times in the 49th to wrap up the innings. Salman Nazar yanked a short ball to deep backward square leg where Mital Patel ran in and took a superb sliding catch. Hansra crossed while the ball was in the air and on the next delivery picked out Standford at deep square leg for 22 to put Rajp on a hat trick. Gordon negotiated the next ball, but only lasted two more before his attempted slog resulted in a thick edge to Dodson behind the stumps as Canada failed to bat out their final six deliveries. Ganesh finished with 3 for 44 in 10 overs while Rajp recovered from an expensive first spell to finish with 3 for 40 in seven overs.
"The early wickets helped us a bit and I think Canada did well to put on a good partnership in the middle with Bagai," Rajp said after the game. "That was good batting. They were on the back foot."
The covers were brought on during the innings break while local club matches continued on the adjacent fields at Maple Leaf CC. However, the covers were eventually taken off 20 minutes beyond the scheduled end time of the interval as Akeem Dodson and Timothy Surujbally prepared to walk out to open for USA with the rain momentarily letting up. Just as the umpires were ready to take the field for the start of the second innings, the rain restarted and the covers were brought back on. Showers continued intermittently for the next 90 minutes before play was eventually abandoned.
USA and Canada will play a pair of Twenty20 fixtures on Sunday at Maple Leaf CC. The first match is scheduled for an 11 a.m. start. DreamCricket.com will have a full report, sponsored by New Inning Foundation, following the conclusion of the day’s play.