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New York Softball Cricket
The Euphoric Kris Shobai Guide Hustlers into Final

By James Persaud
This Sunday the New York Softball Cricket League will bring the 2008 season to a close with four finals in the Mini World Cup 20/20 competition. This year the competition has taken a new twist as new teams have emerged as very challenging contenders in all four divisions vying to become champions.

The first year Hustlers team led by skipper Kris Shobai could end the 2008 season feeling quiet happy as they had a good run making the playoffs in all three major New York Softball Cricket League competitions. In the first 25 over championship Hustler was knockout in the first round and in the 30 over cup they were demolished by United Stars in the finals. To end the season with a victory this Sunday would have surely add a few feathers to their hat. But first the will have get past the surging Mafia, a team who is having a time of their live for the last two Sundays. Mafia sneaked by Liberty Knights by net run rate to secure the last slot for the playoffs and have since played very smart cricket under the watchful eyes of Ravi Etwaroo.

Some members of Mafia team.

In the Mini World Cup competition Hustlers had the highest runs rate per a game but was second to United Stars in the win and loss ranking. After defeating Assassins in the quarter finals in a low scoring game it was East Coast next in what turn out to be a Kris show with his strength of mind and patience he outplayed East Coast.

Last Saturday evening the Sanford Superstar’s skipper Chris Gale gamble and open his bowling with a second string bowler Sammy and it worked-he looked like a king. Last Sunday afternoon East Coast captain Peter Sookdeo tried the same trick and it backed fired. A batsman of Kris Shobai quality you never allow to get settle at the crease, you must use your best bowler at him, after Hustlers had batted 10 overs and Kris still at the crease East Coast only hope was for the sky to open and snow start falling.

Sunday final game between Mafia and Hustlers could see either team end up in victory row, Mafia a team with no big game player but a much all round team with a good batting dept. On the other hand the game could be decided by the more astuteness captain making the right call at the right moment.

Triumph In A Thriller over Waves
It is a mantra that when you partake in a cricket competition you must always strive to be the best or at least try to be placed as high as possible for the playoffs. Some organizers would give a team off for being number one, but too many times I have seen teams in the cellar becoming champions, because it seems that they tends to take their game to a higher level in the playoffs thereby creating upsets.

The Triumph team finds itself in this position in the current Mini World Cup competition. There are two number eight and two number seven teams playing for championship this coming Sunday afternoon. Triumph played division IB favorite Canal who was undefeated in the qualifying games, in the quarter finals and outplayed them by a margin of 3 runs; they took on Waves in the semi finals and put on a superb display of very discipline cricket, defeating them by 27 runs.

Triumph will take on Cotton Field who defeated Nationals, another team who has not had a good playoff run. Triumph will be looking to set the pace of the game and will be counting on their batting led by Ganesh, Murray, Boodram and the rest to make valuable contributions and giving their bowlers a chance. The biggest problem with Triumph when occupying the crease is that they get too many run outs, they are averaging at least three run outs per a game.

Cotton Filed led by Manager Shane Manbodh will be looking to take control of the game early since they are playing at their best presently. Cotton Field will be looking to get big score from the Singh brothers, Tyrone and Ian. They took on Titans in the first round and were victorious with one ball to spare and last Sunday they had a stroll in the park over Nationals. Cotton Field is the favorite in this game, there are a more all round team in both batting and bowling, but don’t count out Triumph who seems to be enjoying the challenge and the cool air in the division IB.

Young Brothers Take On Meten Mere Zorg for Triple Crown
Young Brothers won the last two competitions and after the upper divisions became too crowded they were asked to stay in the same division IIA. With the shorter 20/20 competition they struggled in the early games many times losing by a few runs, thereby keeping their run rate high. At the end of the qualifying rounds they had enough points and a high net run rate to place them at number seven in the playoffs.

Young Brothers played newcomers and division IIA favorite Champions in the first round and got by them in a low scoring match; in the second round they defeated New Jersey and advance to the finals. They will be looking to get good scores from their skipper Dhanraj and opener Twiari and will be depending on spinner Premnauth Mohan to have a good spell with the ball.

Meten Mere Zorg will be coming into the game with one thing in mind to stop any chance of a Triple Crown. Meten Mere Zorg got by Ranchers last Sunday when the Ranchers batsmen had no answer to the M M Zorg bowlers.

Ravens Advance To Take On Cricket Intl.
In the division IIB finals none of the favorite teams made it to the finals, Ravens and Cricket International both teams ended the qualifying rounds in the bottom half off the draw. Ravens knocked off Liberty Boys and division favorite Flashers in the first two rounds. Cricket Internationals got past another big gun New York Mid Rise and Rising Sun to advance to the championship round.

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