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Anxious Moments For NY Under-19 Team Before National C’ships

By Orin Davidson
August 15th, 2008
After some anxious moments, it has been confirmed that the New York Under-19 cricket team will defend its title at this year’s National Championship.

Dominic Gomes

Asruddeen Mohamed

Gregory Sewdial
(Photos by Shiek Mohamed)

But were it left to the New York Board they would’ve become the first reigning champions in history to default.

New York Board chairman Jeffroy Morrishaw had dispatched a blunt note to officials, stating that the team would not play this year, via e-mail.

He cited a lack money and the no time to raise any for the competition scheduled for the end of this month, after asked about New York’s participation by the Tri State Youth Development Program.

Morrishaw’s note was also sent to Cricket Operations official of the United States of America Cricket Association (USACA) Munaff Mohamed who had requested confirmation of participation of the Regions, pending a deadline by Thursday afternoon.

However, after months of hard work running a comprehensive training program, which accounts for all of New York’s youth cricket operations, the Tri State officials were not about to crush their players’ hopes and let their work be wasted.

So the Program took it upon itself to raise the money needed that will allow the team to eventually defend the title won last year in Florida.

According to officials, Morrishaw was duly informed of their intention and so was Mohamed, the USACA operations official.

The competition was planned in March this year but the dates were changed and the final time period on August 29-September 1 was not decided on until two weeks ago.

The teams are required to fund their air travel, meals, except lunch and internal transportation with USACA covering accommodation and breakfast.

Kris Prasad, the New York Representative to USACA expressed disappointment over the New York Region’s inability to handle its responsibilities for the junior competition.

He said youth cricket has been surviving for many years in New York due to the selfless work of private individuals and urged that the recently formed New York Board do more to keep the sport alive.

A similar situation occurred for the National Under-15 competition as Morrishaw had indicated that the team would not have competed in the series held in July.

And it was Prashad and the Tri State Program which came to the rescue by finding the funding for the team’s participation in Chicago. They eventually almost won the competition, finishing a narrow second place and had five players selected to the United States Under-15 team which competed in the Americas Cup in Bermuda.

This time around New York will be represented by a strong squad for the Under-19 series that will be spearheaded by 2007 Most Valuable Player, all-rounder Gregory Sewdial.

Javein Thomas, another all-rounder who was outstanding in the 2007 competition is also included as is Asruddin Mohamed and the experienced Shaan Metha.

Saud Hussein makes a return to junior competition after showing promise in the Under-15 ranks and had actually dropped out of game entirely.

The team though, will miss a number of top players from last year who are age ineligible including former captain Akeem Dodson and Alex Kirton.

Linden Fraser who is contesting an e-mailed suspension from all United States cricket to him by USACA President Gladstone Dainty will continue as coach.

According to sources, Dainty unilaterally made the decision which is unconstitutional and so far no vote by the USACA board has been made on the matter.

Lester Hooper, brother of former West Indies star player Carl Hooper, is the manager.

The squad: Gregory Sewdial, Javein Thomas, Jahanzeb Azam, Sylovasen Kalimootoo, Asruddeen Mohammed, Ron Andrews, Saud Hussein, Kavishhwar Bridgepaul, Keon Lake, Shaan Metha, Hugo D’Olivera, Dominic Gomes, Lekiran Latchman and Andy Harricharran.

Standbys: Asif Ali, Harichan Brijlall and Daymon Perrotte.
Orin Davidson Column Homepage

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