Week 5 is upon us! This is the week where the going gets tough and the tough get going! The real champions are coming into form while beginners luck is running out! Here are your previews and predictions!
Game 1 – OWLS vs Tigers
Kicking us off this week are the red hot Owls and the ice cold Tigers. Last time these two teams met, Tigers captain Vick Vij hit a walk off grand slam (that counted for only one run, since it was a walk off). The Owls are the only short handed team this week with captain Kumail Meghani taking the week off to bask in the glory of his player of the week honours along with Asad Nasser being given permission to sleep in after his pitcher of the week honours. The Owls are counting on the big bat of Shane Nasser to show up to give them a fighting chance. Look for Maysum Jaffer and Farhan Ratansi to lead the way on offence for the Tigers as the Owls play without a rover yet again.
Prediction: 9-7 Tigers
Game 2 – Tigers vs Falcons
In the second game of the day, Imtiyaz Kara is back to prove that this trade wasn’t as one sided as the Kawhi for Demar trade. While the Tigers Mahmood Kara was hoping to feast off of the terrible Falcons pitching, he will have to wait another day as all-star pitcher Riaz Champsi is poised to make the start this week. With the way the Falcons are playing, they are going to need Champsi to do more than just pitch a gem in order to get out of the JMS basement. Will Captains Shane Worthington and Abbas Nasser break out of their hitting slumps? This preview does not think so.
Prediction: 8-3 Tigers
Game 3 – Wolves vs Owls
In a rematch of week four, the Wolves are hungry to get their revenge. After getting their first win of the season, Captains Ali Merali and Imran Virji are looking to get on a winning streak as they enter the wolf days of summer. Rumour has it that Irfahn Khimji is looking forward to batting with runners on base for once without Meghani hitting home runs in front of him. Khimji has hit most of his career home runs against Wolves pitcher, Mikael Ratansi, including one last week. With Asad Nasser sure to show up for this game, this preview does not think the Wolves stand a chance, even against a short handed Owls squad.
Prediction: 11 – 6 Owls
Game 4 – Falcons vs Lions
These two teams first face off since the trade deadline. Lot of emotions running high in this one as the Falcons look to prove they are the better team. However, we’re still looking for our first mercy game of the season, this game could just be it. Lions Captain Asad Hussain is one of those players who usually gets stronger as the season wears on. In case he hasn’t noticed, he still has yet to hit a home run this season! If anyone is planning on parking on the street beyond right field, this is not the week to do so. The Falcons are going to have to limit base runners to minimize the damage. With all but three players on the lions with an OBP over .400, this could get ugly fast.
Prediction: 17-3 Lions after 5 innings
Game 5 – Bucks vs Wolves
There are some high stakes in this game, with some calling it the “Avocado Bowl”. Most of the teams have no idea what that means to them, but maybe the additional motivation will prove to be just what Kaunain Taki and Samir Damani (if healthy) need to get their bats going. The Bucks will be without breakout star lefty Sameer Karim but are hungry to get back on a winning streak. Last year, this was about the time that Captain Ali Raza Nasser ran out of steam, spiralling his team into the basement. Could this be the beginning of the end? Not if Nadim Rahemtulla has anything to do with it. Look for Rahemtulla to carry the Bucks back to their winning ways.
Prediction: 12-6 Bucks
Game 6 – Lions vs Eagles
In what could be a preview of the JMS finals this year, perennial 1A and 1B picks will be squaring off as Miqdad Jaffer might be pitching to Ali Manek each at bat. After Manek and Abbasali Kermalli combined to fly out at the warning track seven times last week, Jaffer isn’t worried about the fading power in this Eagles lineup.
“I don’t need to pitch to Manek, Altaf has him under control.” – Miqdad Jaffer
Leading his team in AVG, OBP, and SLG, the Lions will need Hussein Jiwan to lead the charge against Hussein Allidina. Rumour has it that Abbas Allidina has been practicing just in case brother Hussein runs out of steam again this week. This one is going to be a nail biter!
Prediction: 7-6 Eagles
Game 7 – Bucks vs Eagles
Rounding out the day will be the battle for first place. After both the Bucks and Eagles winning their respective games, this game will determine who will be in first going into the back half of the season. Look for a stellar defensive game as both teams look to put their best foot forward. Rumour has it that Manek has been petitioning to move Kermalli to first base to get some youth on his right side as Manek’s range isn’t quite what it used to be. Watch for the Bucks to exploit that hole at the hot corner to do some damage.
Prediction: 8-5 Bucks