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EACA BIG-4 FINAL – Royo Sankar, MVP
By John L. Aaron

August 29th, 2008
“I prepared mentally and physically for this match,” is how Royo Sankar described his contribution to East Bank’s thriller of a victory over arch rivals Richmond Hill, last Sunday at Idlewild Park, Queens. The opening batsman’s contribution of 54 runs helped secure him the championship match’s MVP honors, the Tropical Nights Restaurant & Bar trophy, and a bat from the Guyanese cricket enthusiast Isaac Bissoon.

Roy Sankar poses with his awards.

Roy Sankar collects the MVP trophy from Paul of Tropical Nights Lounge and Bar. (Photos by Shiek Mohamed)

Sankar who narrowly missed playing as a youth for his native Guyana in the mid-80s, used words such as “Best game ever, happy, fantastic, delighted,” and several other adjectives to describe, not only his MVP and Most Runs awards, but his team’s thrilling victory over arch rivals Richmond Hill.

The die-hard cricketer, who named his young son Sourav, after India’s left-arm batting maestro Sourav Ganguly, played for Richmond Hill between 1997 and 2004, before breaking away to become one of the “founding fathers” of the East Bank Cricket Club in 2005. The right-handed batsman recalls being called to trials for the Guyana Youth XI, along with current teammate Sohan Das. He lamented that Sohan was selected, but he unfortunately, was not. However, he holds no beef against the circumstances surrounding his moment to shine as part of his country’s national youth squad. He happily declared that the Big-4 match against Richmond Hill was his best match ever, more so because it was Richmond Hill and the circumstances outlined above.

Prior to the start of the match, Royo Sankar said he wanted to win so badly, therefore he prepared himself mentally and physically for the game. Modestly downplaying his patient contribution of 54 runs, while nursing a pulled hamstring and the use of a runner, he said it was Thelston Johnson’s boundary in the final over that sealed the victory for East Bank. He credits Johnson for the perfect execution of the boundary that had all of the East bank supporters cheering wildly.

In an invited comment on the general state of cricket in the New York area, Royo Sankar laments the continued selection of older players at the inter-league and regional levels. He opined, “The older players need the step aside and give the youths a chance. It is our only hope at building a strong future senior team at the national level.” It is an opinion shared by many in the New York metropolitan area, following the USA national team being kicked out in the recent ICC Division 5 WCL tournament held in Jersey.

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