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East Coast is 25-Overs Champions!

By Justin Ally
July 20th, 2008
On a cloudy Sunday afternoon Baisley Park, located on 150th Street and Rockaway Blvd., in Queens, was the venue for a thrilling five-hour softball cricket match, between East Coast Cricket Club and United Stars Cricket Club. United Stars was captained by 2007 M.V.P. Bobby Prahalad and had earlier defeated Hustlers Cricket Club in a 15-over semi final match, earning the right to meet East Coast in the final.

Bronx Lions

Kris Shobai collect his team award.

Young Brothers

United Stars won the toss and elected to bat. Vicky “Bolo” Dhanraj and Ravi Balli opened the batting. However, Dhanraj was bowled by Mukesh “Gummel” Matai for two and Ravi Balli was caught off the bowling of Javed “White Boy” Ali for seven. Ravindra Ivan an ex East Coast player went in to bat next and made an aggressive 24 runs, before being caught off the bowling of Javed Ali. A few more United Stars wickets fell, before Bobby Prahalad went in to bat, but unfortunately was soon bowled by Javed Ali for seven. When Bobby got out United Stars had 90 runs for the loss of six wickets in the 20th over. With the United Stars in trouble at this point, the hard-hitting Frankie Baichoo was up next. He was caught before scoring, by Ronald Khan who took a spectacular catch, and off the bowling of Javed Ali.

The United Stars were eventually all out for 101 runs in their allotted 25 overs. East Coast was still feeling very proud of their bowling attack, when the United Stars took to the field. Nayeem Mohammed and Ronald Khan opened the batting for East Coast. Ronald was run out when on five and Nayeem was caught off the bowling of Ivan for eight. Enter Asif Ali and Prashad “Short Man” Mahadeo. Ali was caught off the bowling of Ivan after scoring only five, while Prashad was disappointingly bowled by Frankie Baichoo for three.

Just when things looking a bit dismal for East Coast, Satro Seeraj and Peter Persaud put on a partnership of 24 runs. At half time East Coast had 49 runs on the board for the loss of four wickets. Satro and Peter Persaud were soon replaced at the middle by Javed Ali and Peter Sookdeo. Javed was bowled by Bobby for nine and Peter Sookdeo going for a hard single with Javed injured a ligament again and had to be carried off the field.

Goordial Matai the Godfather then rose again, with East Coast needing 27 runs in 24 balls. He hit two big fours against Bola Prahalad, Bobby’s brother. Matai swung around the entire game for East Coast, before he was bowled by Bobby for nine. East Coast senior player Peter Sookdeo aka the Shaid Afridi of softball took to the wicket again, joining his partner Mukesh Matai at the wicket. Facing United Stars’ captain Bobby Prahalad, Peter hit a blazing four through the covers, as Bobby Prahalad finished his allotted overs. His brother Bola Prahalad then took the ball, with East Coast needing 11 runs in 12 balls. Gummel Matai had the strike and he hit a double, followed by a single, before giving the strike back to Peter Sookdeo. East Coast then needed eight runs in 10 balls.

The drama and tension at the ground soon began building, as Bola Prahalad’s right arm passed the umpire for a delivery to the hard-hitting Peter Sookdeo, who hit the delivery high and hard, as the crowd watched the ball as it sailed over the boundary for a huge six. East Coast soon tied the game was poised to bring it home. With the tension still in the air and the United Stars' players nervously taking up their fielding positions, East Coast with the wind behind them and confidence in the batsmen at the middle, waited patiently for the next delivery. It soon arrived and Peter Sookdeo dispatched it for a single as he and Gummel crossed, and East Coast became the 2008 25-overs champions.

Javed “White Boy” Ali was named the 2008 M.V.P of the 25-overs championship. He had bowling figures of 5-1-17-4.

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