By Dervon A. Wallace
MCL Roy Sweeney Challenge Cup
On Sunday, August 19, 2012 Villagers Cricket Club defeated Staten Island Cricket Club by a mere two wickets as action continued in the New York Metropolitan Cricket League’s Roy Sweeney Challenge Cup, and in a game played at the historic Walker Park; the home of Staten Island CC for over 130 years.

Cuthbert Mendoza was the pick of the Villagers CC bowlers with figures of 4 for 33 from 6 overs. Photo by Shiek Mohamed

In a game reduced to 30 overs because of a late start, the home team won the toss and decided to take first strike but it was Villagers CC who were celebrating immediately as off the first ball of the match bowled by G. Adams that was well defended by Staten Island CC opening batsman C. Choudhury and to the amazement of all he stood and watched as the ball rolled back to dislodge the bails and this signaled the start of what was to follow, as Staten Island never recovered and was dismissed for  a disappointing 92 in 20.5 overs with B. Rampersaud and number nine batsman S. Sackrollar both top scoring with 15 each. and opening batsman P. Nanduvanan, 14, the only batsmen to get into double figures.

Cuthbert Mendoza was the pick of the Villagers CC bowlers finishing with 4 for 33 from 6 overs, G. Adams 2 for 9 from 4 overs, T. Gordon 0 for 17 from 4 overs, R. Mowatt 1 for 10 from 3 overs, E. Gayle 1 for 0 from .5 overs and Romoy Ricketts; a 21 year old leg-spinner who finds playing time hard to come by in a very strong Villagers squad, bagged 1 for 21 from 3 overs in the process picking up his first wicket at the senior level.

In their reply Villagers CC lacked the professionalism it took to put a game to rest and was almost embarrassed by Staten Island CC, as the Villagers management decided to dramatically change its batting line up; opening the batting with bowling ace G. Adams who batted at number nine for most of the season and E. Gayle known for his bowling and batting at number 10 or 11 throughout the season. With his other half and kids cheering him on as he walked to the crease Adams was dismissed in spectacular fashion off the first ball of the innings; comprehensively bowled for a first ball duck by medium pacer G. Shenghi.

Mowatt joined Gayle and after constantly playing and missing, found it hard to negotiate the swing of the new white ball, however, after a few overs he finally connected and hit a few lusty blows top scoring with 32, while Gayle made 20, as Villagers wickets fell regularly and some of the players who had already changed and packed their bags were made to make a hasty return to the changing room to unpack their bags and be prepared to do battle as all but one member of the Villagers camp was required to bat. It was pandemonium in the Villagers dressing room and it could have been even worse had S. Khan held on to a tough chance offered by Melroy Kingston batting in the unfamiliar number 10 position with Villagers still needing one run to win as Lady Luck was to have it, the winning run was scored off that missed chance, with Villagers finishing 95 for 8 from 22.3 overs.

Bowling for Staten Island CC: G. Shenghi 2 for 26 from 6 overs, S. Khan 2 for 24 from 6 overs, S. Sackrollar 0 for 17 from 4 overs, U. Koodi 1 for 18 from 4 overs and A. Sayed 2 for 10 from 2.3 overs.