BSL Nights Season 2 - Week 9 Recap

Istanbul vs. Cairo

To begin week 9, The almighty mighty Egyptians of Cairo battled the Turks of Istanbul to a 17-17 tie.  A visibally perturbed Zain Malik was seen exiting the park knowing that he and his team let one slip away.  That's because Istanbul's nine run lead vanished away, into the sahara desert, where Cairo found its magic by managing to score ten runs in the last two innings of play.  Given how hard its been to accumulate points in Nights, GM Yasser Malik of Cairo must be thrilled with this outcome.  Moreover, several of the Cairoians found their bats.  Notably, Ali Chaudhry continued his desert storm on opposing pitchers and defenses (just check the stats).  It's just a matter of time before he gets called up to the big leagues for real this time. Istanbul certainly matched with their big bats, mister T. Sheikh and R. Siddiqi drove in twelve of the nineteen runs of Istanbul.  Looks like they can use some support.  According to this writer, Istanbul is as feared as any team in this league... offensively speaking.   Cairo, missing its premier pitcher, will certainly take this tie and move onto the next game.  These two teams will face off again in Week 14, where Istanbul will look to avenge a missed opportunity and Cairo will look to maintain its grip on the playoffs.

Istanbul Pros
-T. Sheikh blasting two homers

Istanbul Opportunities
-Now sitting outside the playoff picture, the big boys in Red should maintain self-confidence because of the BSL veteran experience that many of its players hold. There's still 7-8 games remaining for Istanbul to rebound.  But it will need to play loose and relaxed so that the environment is relaxed.  Wins should come in no time 
- OF play deep to cut off the XBH

Cairo Pros
- Yasser Malik starting to get on base, scoring runs.
- A. Chaudhry making strong case for back2back, but will need to translate his production to team victories
- 19 hits as a team, 10 XBH

Cairo Opportunities
- This writer is redacting Cairo Opportunities for competitive purposes

Cairo vs. Lahore 
Fresh after feeling about as good as you can after a tie, Cairo took on the fiery and rejuvenated men of Lahore.  In this game Cairo found it equally challenging to score runs. Their top three hitters were excellent, however, last time that we checked, softball is a team sport.  Nevertheless Cairo somehow managed to score 7 runs in the top of the 7th to tie the game, that they had no business being in.  If Cairo believes it will return to the playoffs as a serious threat, then it will have to begin seizing opportunites to score runs instead of wasting runners in scoring position.

From the beginning of the game, the energy stemming from the Lahorian bench was that like non other before.  The positive mist was felt all the way towards the 3rd row in the bleachers.  Today was the day that Lahore laid off the aloo parathas and came with their A games.  A fresh attitude coupled with a risky, but necessary move by the madcap GM Aftab Sheikh whose hard wired negotiating tactics landed Lahore the very talented Farooq Sani.  Not without a high price, the cost was, premier pitcher, Zia Beg.  Sani, had the game of his life, going 4/4, and belting his first BSL Nights homer.  A couple days after being traded, he leads his team to a much needed victory.  On another note, Salman Ahmad picked up another victory, to start an amazing run to his pitching career.  

Cairo Pros
- Scoring 7 runs to tie the game shows heart, grit and resilience.  This team can make strong run in the playoffs because of these characteristics.  While they fell just short this time around, no need to keep your heads down fellas.

Cairo Opportunities
- Errors...five in a game won't get the job done.

Lahore Pros
- Salman and Sani
- Mohammed Al-Sukhni having a low key good year.  Most improved player?
- Aftab Khan looks like a steal from the draft... The GM is considering putting Khan on waivers so that the GM proclaims his status as the best Aftab, bar none, on the team.
- Amir Khalil doing his job in the leadoff position

Lahore Opportunities
- Momentum, keep it up.