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File photo Zaheer Sadloo. (Photo Gallery)
Eastern American Cricket Association 2007
East Bank And Everest/ACS Twenty20 Champs!
Everest/ACS Doubles Up In Championship Year

By John L. Aaron
Division “B” Twenty20 Championship Final

East Bank Cricket Club emerged EACA Division “B” Twenty20 champions last Sunday, defeating Golden Arrow Cricket Club by six wickets, primarily behind the bat of Debo Sankar and Zaheer Sadloo’s half-centuries. East Bank showed no signs of rust, despite a prolonged period of inactivity, due to league scheduling difficulties.

Winning the toss and opting to take first strike on a beautiful day made for cricket, Golden Arrow led by former Guyana and West Indies Test player Sew Shivnarine, opened with Marlon Kallicharran and Freddie Roopchand. The pair would post 54 runs on the tins before the departure of Kallicharran, 39 off of 26 balls and including 4x4s. With such a solid start, one would have expected Golden Arrow to post a total somewhere north of 180. However, East Bank pulled off its pace attack of Telston Johnson and replaced him with Zaheer Sadloo. Johnson’s expensive spell of 4-0-44-0, along with Tegana McKenzie’s 4-0-38-1 was welcomed by Golden Arrow, before the bowling change.

Sadloo’s 4-0-21-2 contribution would be the catalyst for East Bank’s breakthrough, as Golden Arrow’s middle-order appeared to have trouble playing the spin, losing five wickets while only adding 41 runs. J. Khan, 26 n.o. D. Kellawan, 18 and B. Dutt and J. Sookhan, each with 14 helped Golden Arrow inch to 165 for 7 in their 20 overs.

After posting a healthy average of 10 runs per over in the first five overs, Golden Arrow’s average trickled off to less than 8 per over and finally climbing back to a reasonable 8.25 runs per over.

FOW: 1-54, 2-61, 3-94, 4-94, 5-95, 6-126 and 7-153. Skipper Steve Mangru with figures of 4-0-17-2, helped by Sohan Dass’ 2-0-28-1 and the aforementioned McKenzie’s single scalp, were responsible for holding Golden Arrow to under their projected target of 200 plus runs.

East Bank in response was solid and committed after losing their first wicket at 40, with the departure of Royo Sankar, 16 off 17 balls. Zaheer Sadloo joined opener Debo Sankar and the pair added 45 runs, with Debo Sankar racing to 54 off 30 balls and including 6x4s. However, it was Sadloo’s knock of 54 n.o. that was the mainstay of the East Bank inning. With selective scoring opportunities, Sadloo nudged East Bank closer to the target. Eventually F. Sooknanan, 21 (15b 1x4) and Sadloo would see East Bank reach 169 for 4 in 18.3 overs. Zaheer Sadloo would stamp the victory with a towering six to seal East Bank’s 2007 Twenty20 Division “B” championship.

FOW: 1-40, 2-85, 3-88 and 4-102. Golden Arrow’s J. Sookhan 4-0-19-2 and F. Montana’s 4-0-34-1 were responsible for the East Bank wickets.

East Bank’s convincing victory over Golden Arrow was a deserving one, despite the odds being somewhat even going into the championship match.

Division “A” Twenty20 Championship Final
With the much anticipated clash of Everest/ACS and Richmond Hill in the Division “A” Twenty20 final, being second on the day’s playing card, some fans sauntered into the ground after midday, missing out on some of the exciting batting displays of East Bank and Golden Arrow.

Shiv Ragubar of Richmond Hill.

Richmond Hill Cricket Club won the toss and invited Everest/ACS to take first strike in the final match of the EACA’s 2007 season. Taking the offer with both hands Everest/ACS set about establishing a defendable score, albeit only 137 for the loss of 9 wickets in the allotted 20 overs.

Everest/ACS with 71 off the first ten overs and 46 off the next five overs, was on their way to posting a modest 150 plus in the championship match. With a solid start of 40 coming off the first five overs - Ryan Sukhdeo, 23 off 27 balls and Hazrat “Bud” Amin, 16 off 14 deliveries (3x4s), Everest/ACS seemed intent on wanting to further their legacy of championship victories.

The Everest/ACS’ top order batsmen were responsible for the bulk of the team’s 137 run tally, as the top five recorded scores of 16, Bud Amin, 23, R. Sukhdeo, 22, A. Khan, 23, Z. Amin, and 17, T. Hastoo. The bottom six contributed less than double digits each, with the exception of Syed Amin, who did not bat.

FOW: 40, 64, 68, 119, 119, 136, 137, 137 and 137. Bowling for Richmond Hill: Zaheer Saffie 4-0-25-3 and Travis Rodney 4-0-21-2, assisted by R. Bactowar 1 for 14, W. Isaac 1 for 20 and S. Ragubar 1 for 30.

Having scored 137, it was Everest/ACS’ time to defend such a seemingly low total against a team with younger legs between the wickets. However, those younger legs would fail Richmond Hill, to some extent, as three of the team’s batsmen departed via the run out route.

Within the first twelve minutes of the match skipper Sunesh Wazid was back in the pavilion bowled by Syed Amin. The latter along with fellow opening bowler Trevor Walke would be the undoing of Richmond Hill, as the opening pair clamped down on any thoughts of an explosive batting attack entertained by Richmond Hill. Syed Amin’s 4-0-17-1 and Walke’s 4-0-14-0 after eight overs with only 31 runs on the tins, was the story already taking shape.

Shiv Ragubar’s knock of 39 off 26 balls (2x6s, 4x4s) was the highlight of the Richmond Hill inning. Other major contributions came from Zaheer Saffie, 16, Ramphal Bactowar, inexplicably run out for 13, Tamesh Balwant and A. Haripaul, 12 each, and P. Sukhdeo 11 n.o. Ultimately Richmond Hill had reached its maximum 20 overs and only had 121 runs to show for it.

FOW: 10, 33, 44, 46, 94, 99, 104, 107, 114 and 121. Zamin Amin with figures of 4-0-19-3 was deceptively the home wrecker, while Terry Hastoo and Karran Ganesh each snared one wicket apiece to complete the bowling fraternity’s grab bag. With three run-outs Richmond Hill did not do themselves any favors in the lame process.

The game was not without an unfortunate incident as Bud Amin in attempting to field a ball at backward point fell on his right wrist, breaking it in two places. He is doing much better now and recuperating with his arm in a cast, in Florida. We all wish him a speedy recovery.

On the brighter side Everest/ACS had won yet another championship. Having won this year’s 40-overs Big-4 final against Enmore, Everest/ACS chalked up their second Twenty20 championship in as many years.

Congratulations to Everest/ACS and East Bank. This year’s Twenty20 champions!
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