“The Rage In The Cage”
By John L. Aaron
Who will emerge 2012 EACA Power40 Division “A” champion should be known by sunset on Sunday afternoon. The Everest/ACS vs. Atlantis match-up promises to be an exciting finale to a 40-overs tournament that saw the top four teams emerge to compete in the semi-final fixtures of last week.
Being billed as “The Rage in the Cage,” the match will no doubt see some power-hitting. Parking away from Foch Blvd and Barron Street is highly recommended. With live scoring on newyorkcricket.com and live ball-by-ball commentary at the park, it promises to be an exciting day of cricket.
Everest/ACS led by Karan Ganesh, an all-rounder who started playing cricket at a tender age in his native Guyana, last weekend defeated Meten-Meer-Zorg by three wickets. The latter finished the Power40 tournament with a record of 12-2 with 60 points and a net run rate of 1.40, while Everest/ACS enjoyed a record of 11-3, with 55 points and a net run rate of 1.89
Karan Ganesh’s team is a well-balanced one of veteran and youth players providing a wealth of experience and unbridled enthusiasm by its younger members. Among its roster are veteran players such as medium pacer Trevor Walke, known for his wily in-swingers and crafty bowling as well as hitting a few out of the park. Walke’s opening partner Saheed Amin, also a medium pacer is equally cunning with the ball and the two bowlers have been known to suffocate batsmen trying to get going in the early overs. Zamin Amin is no stranger to winning championships and competing at the highest levels having captained the US national team. Amin is a very clever all-rounder and provides enviable guidance to his young skipper Ganesh. Also included among the veterans are Terry Hastoo, a middle-order batsman and Amjad Khan, a former US national player who has the distinction of scoring the most single inning runs (304 n.o.) by a batsman in the USA. The 46 year-old Khan is also a utility medium-pace bowler.
Wicketkeeper Tamesh “Cambio” Balwant is always a threat with the bat as well as the gloves behind the sticks. Gregory Sewdial nearing 21 in a few days has represented the USA at the Under-19 level and is a prolific run-scorer if allowed to break out. Skipper Karan Ganesh has represented York College, the 2012 American College Cricket champions and is a consummate match-winner. Many have wondered why he was never selected to represent the USA. Other players to watch in the expected Everest/ACS line up are Aun Merchant, an all-rounder, Steve Nowrangilall, and Prem Manbode.
Atlantis completed the EACA’s 40-overs tournament with a record of 12-2, 60 points and a net run rate of 2.61 averaging more than 200 runs per match. The team’s season performance placed them at the top of this year’s 40-overs rankings. Captained by 19 year-old Prashanth Nair, Atlantis has a lower median age than Everest/ACS and may have a slight advantage in the outfield. Nair, born in Kerala, India is a left-arm leg-spinner who has represented the US at the Under-19 level. No slouch with the bat, the youngest captain ever of Atlantis is always in the game and looking to seize winning opportunities.
Atlantis has depth in its batting and bowling line-ups, and on any given day one player will step up with the bat or the ball. Vice Captain Nicholas Standford is a run-getter and has a double century this season. He’s also a very economical medium pacer who’s knocking on the door of representing the USA at the senior level. Alex Amsterdam and Henderson Blades are always batting threats to any opponent; both have been prolific scorers this season. Amsterdam is a right-arm off-break bowler and a quiet assassin who can hit the ball very hard. Kavishwar Bridgepaul is an imposing middle-order batsman who’s a power-hitter. Jason Greaves, one of four Barbadian-born players on the Atlantis squad is an exciting stroke-player and a very economical right-arm off-break bowler who constantly challenges batsmen. Keon Lake is a former New York region Under-19 captain and bowler who asks no favors and gives no breaks to batsmen. He’s always on top of his game and is an excellent fielder and match-winner.
Ron Andrew’s batting is a spicy as the island from which he hails – Grenada. He is enjoying an excellent 2012 season at the crease. He enjoyed much success on the recent Atlantis tour to Guyana. Jermaine Horatio, Ryan Hurley and Hugh Craig are three of the stand-out bowlers who are expected to do well if selected. Ryan Sukhdeo and Clifford Hamilton are the Atlantis wicketkeepers, both of whom can and have given very good accounts of themselves as batsmen, in addition to excelling behind the stumps. Young Hamilton’s power-hitting during the club’s tour of Guyana prompted the legendary Clive Lloyd to comment that at Hamilton’s age, he (Lloyd) could not hit the ball as hard and as far.
Despite only having one US national player on its roster, Atlantis more than makes up with enthusiasm for its lack of veteran experience enjoyed by Everest/ACS, a team that has beaten Atlantis twice this year, but by slim margins.
The odds on winning this championship final rest with the team that wants it the most. Everest/ACS will do everything possible to earn another trophy, utilizing their experience and cricket cunning abilities to bring it home. However, Atlantis has not been to the winner’s circle in quite some time and must bring a hunger to succeed, after having an equally terrific season as Everest/ACS, despite losing to the latter on two previous occasions. That fact should be motivation enough to propel them across the finish line.
The winner of this contest will be determined by the attitude displayed by either team. Attitude drives winners, and a winning attitude makes a terrific statement of true champions.
While the focus may be on The Cage and this weekend’s Division “A” finals, four other teams will be doing battle to reach the finals of the Division “B” championships. The “off-Broadway” action takes place at Heckscher State Park and Bay Park, LI.
With the 1 plays 4 and 2 plays 3 format employed, the Division “B” semi-finals has been set for this Sunday, September 2nd.
Victory CC vs. Arsenal CC
At the top of the standings with an 8-6 record, 40 points and a positive net run rate of 0.24, Victory clashes with Arsenal at Heckscher State Park this Sunday. Arsenal has a season record of 6-8 with a positive net run rate of 0.21. Match time is 12:00 Noon, with Victory as the host team.
Arsenal narrowly edged out Enmore CC also with a 6-8 record and 30 points, but a negative net run rate of -0.90
Falcons CC vs. All-Star CC
Falcons hosts All-Star at Bay Park at 12:00 Noon this Sunday. Falcons with a season record of 6-6, one tied and one no-result match, 35 points and a negative net run rate of -0.23 will try to fly above the All-Star XI in this weekend’s encounter. All-Star will no doubt try to live up to its name following a 6-7 season record with one no-result match, 32 points and a negative net run rate of -0.93
The winner of this Sunday’s two semi-final fixtures are expected to clash next week at a location and time to be announced by the EACA.
Good luck to all of the teams in this Sunday’s matches.