April 29, 2012
The second annual MEG vs FEM cricket challenge was held in glorious Freiburg sunshine on Sunday, 29 April 2012 at the Seepark. There was a huge turnout for the match, with over 60 present and past MEG and FEM students, and even the occasional Professor, turning up for the event. The day began with an open barbeque for all in attendance, followed by the important business of the cricket. At the end of the day, the FEMs prevailed by a very slender margin, but with much merriment had by all. The annual cricket challenge is fast becoming one of the must-attend events on the Freiburg social calendar, as it provides an excellent opportunity for MEGs and FEMs of different generations to mix in a relaxed and fun environment. It is just one example of the many extra-curricular and social events open to students of the MEG program.
On the day, Freiburg provided perfect weather for cricket, with warm and dry conditions prevailing over the picturesque and lush surroundings of the Seepark – the home of cricket in Germany. The match began with the respective captains addressing their 22 player strong teams. It looked like there were delivering stirring motivational speeches, but in reality they were mostly just explaining the rules of the game to the many people who had never played, or even heard of, cricket before. Following this brief review of the modified version of the rules (employed due to the large number of players on each team), and some very intensive bowling and batting master-classes, the game was underway.
The FEM team gained an early advantage when they won the toss and elected to bat first. The FEMs started solidly and their play seemed to justify their pre-game cockiness, following their landslide victory in last year’s contest. However, some excellent bowling spells and tidy fielding from the MEGs, combined with haphazard running between wickets from the FEMs, worked to restrict the FEM total to an achievable target for the MEGs. At the end of the FEM innings, the MEGs were quietly confident that they could pull off an upset and secure their first win in the young, but prestigious, tournament.
Unfortunately, perhaps the anticipation of victory proved to be too much of a distraction for the MEGs, who lost a number of vital early wickets. However, some solid middle order play allowed the MEGs to right the ship and to begin to build a respectable score. Some big hitting towards the end of the innings had the nervous FEM team praying that the heavens would open and wash out the game, thus saving them from their first defeat. Happily, the few drops of rain that were falling soon passed and the MEG innings could continue unabridged. However, with the excitement building, and victory within their grasp, some costly late wickets and controversial umpiring decisions conspired to leave the MEG team 10 runs short of victory.
And so once more, the FEMs were crowned cricket champions of Freiburg. However, the much improved MEG team showed they had a lot of potential, and will hopefully be able to snatch the trophy from the FEMs next year.