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Warriors CC Defeats Sportsman CC To Win Third Final

Warriors CC won their 3rd. straight Championship in the Commonwealth Cricket League after defeating the Sportsman CC in the Final match which was played at the Whitestone Oval in the Bronx.

They dominated the Bangladesh CC in the quarter-finals played at Van Cortlandt scoring 207 and beating their opponents by 68 runs.

The semi-finals, however, was not a ‘piece of cake’ because they met up with an in-form Seven Star CC who was playing them at their home-ground in Whitestone.

Warriors knew they would have their hands full with players like Vijay Seenarine [Knapp], Adrian Bevaun and Troy Harper.

On a beautiful day at Ferry Park, where the sun shone brightly, WCC won the toss and chose to take first strike. After a good opening partnership of 52 by openers Bobby Jodhan and Waheed Akhtar, it wasn’t long after WCC were looking at 102 for 4 and in a bit of trouble.

That was when Ismael Ahmad, 2006 MVP and “Prince” Nadir Mohamed came together and put on 106 runs. Responsible batting by the other middle-order batsmen Arshad Hussein, Amir Khan and Qamar Hamid took the total to 222.

A good total for a ‘playoff’ game.

The Seven Star openers started brightly by putting on 37 for the first wicket but Warriors decided to fight fire with fire and brought in their spin attack of Waheed Akhtar and Qamar Hamid. It immediately paid dividends as it put a brake to the scoring-rate and wickets started tumbling at regular intervals. Seemed like Warriors was going to cruise home and victory seemed a mere formality.

Not so to Vijay Seenarine though. This brilliant batsman stayed with the tail and farmed the strike to such an extent that it reminded us of Brian Lara when he played a similar inning to beat the Aussies several years ago in the West Indies.

With 11 runs were needed in the last over and Mohamed Arshad bowling. The first ball was hit for a bounday. Now it was 7 needed for victory off 5 deliveries. Arshad in to Knapp again and he connects in the middle of the bat. The ball is going, going, going and almost gone. Nadir Mohammed is fielding on the boundary and he waits for it. He moves back and is almost touching the ropes. It seems like a sure six. Nadir jumps into the air with both hands held high. All 5 foot 5 inches of him. The ball sticks in his hands and he clings on for dear life. Both his feet are 2 inches from the ropes but he does not lose his balance and it’s a legitimate catch.

Victory to Warriors and on to the Final to play Sportsman who has defeated PakAMerica in their semi-final.

Sportsman has had a great season and for that they have to be thankful to Ryan Hurley, their Bajan import. The club has only lost 2 matches in the regular season and they end up finishing in first place in the Premier Division of the CCL.

They destroyed an extremely talented PakAmerica team in the semi finals bowling them out for a meagre 77 runs. PakAmerica was supposedly the batting power-house in the CCL this year.

So it’s on to the Whitestone Oval again for the Finals. Its a great morning but rain is in the forecast for late afternoon.

Again Warriors win the toss. At the end of their 35 overs they amass 226 runs with major contributions coming from Bobby Jodhan with 47 runs, Waheed 32 , Arshad 40 and another superb partnership of 72 between Pakistan’s best Sarmad Khan and Nadir Mohamed.

Warriors was taking nothing for granted because how could you when you had to bowl to mighty hitters like Ryan Hurley, Pete Plunkett and Hiram Patel?

Blackman and Plunket opened for Sportsman putting on 59 runs in 6 overs. It was total destruction as they dispatched the opening bowlers to all parts of Whitestone. Some balls even ended up underneath the Whitestone bridge.

But as they so often do when they are in trouble, Warriors summoned their spinners who were relentless. Ryan Hurley immediately went magnificently caught by Faizal Ali off Sarrmad Khan. The spinners were all effective and did not disappoint their fans that day at Ferry Park.

Needing 16 runs to win in the last over, Jordan blasted a boundary first ball but was out the next and Warriors won by 12 runs.

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