Marshall, Roye, Staple and Wallace discuss tactics as young Roye hang with dad.

Metropolitan Cricket League
By Dervon Wallace
History making Villagers Pacesetters Sports and Athletic Club became the first unbeaten triple champions in the history of the 134 year old New York Metropolitan and District Cricket Association League (NYMDCAL) when their claim the Twenty20 President Cup to add to a loaded cabinet which already plays home to the Clement ‘Busta’ Lawrence Round Robin and Roy Sweeney Challenge Cup trophies.

Semi Final action at Gateway
Villagers remain dominant over their former nemesis Westbury CC defeating them by 3 wickets in Twenty20 semifinal action to register their third win in forth meeting of the season to go with a tie in an otherwise perfect Villages 2013.

Rashad Marshall awaiting his turn to bat.

In a game reduced to 15 overs Westbury won the toss and elected to bat opening with Darren Ferguson and young Javein Thomas. Their posted 31 in 3 overs before Ferguson 11 (12balls 1×6) was caught by Raldo Mowatt off Rashard Marshall bowling. It was 36 for 2 when Barrington Bartley after flicking a George Adams delivery for 4 was next ball caught by Richard Staple and 3 balls  later Thomas who in Adams first over stood tall and with disdain power  “slap” a ball of a good length high over log-on, it was a shot which prompted Villagers captain Cliff Roye to take a good look at the bat used by Thomas, however it was Adams who had the last laugh when he sent Thomas 19 (10balls 1×4 1×6)mid stump for a walk. Kevin Baugh and Dennison Thomas shared in a 56 runs partnership from 50 balls before the latter fell for 25 (18balls 2×4 1×6) caught by Staple off Steve Massiah bowling. At the end of the allotted overs it was 120 for 4 with Baugh unbeaten on 47 (46balls 1×4 3×6) and Horace Porter on 6.

Bowling for Villagers; Adams 2 for 24 from 3, Talisman Gordon 0 for 24 from 2, Marshall 1 for 21 from 3, Staple 0 for 18 from 3, Ewart Gayle 0 for 19 from 2 and Massiah 1 for 11 from 2.

In their reply Villagers lost Staple from the lost ball of the first over caught behind by Baugh off a beautiful Jermaine Lawson out swinger which pitch on or about off-stump forcing Staple to play. Melroy Kingston and Massiah added 41 from 31 balls before Kingston 23 (22balls 1×4 1×6) held out to J.  Thomas on the long-off fence off Bartley bowling to make it 48 for 2 with the first ball of the seventh over and it was pandemonium in the Villagers camp when Marshall stroke the very next ball to mid-on and set off without calling and by the time Massiah realized what has happen it was too late and he was run out for 15 (14balls 1×4 1×6).  Roye came and went for 3, Marshall made up for his mishap striking the balls in the nearby bushes with ease  much to the delight of the Villagers camp as his friend Massiah kept encouraging him. The game took another twist when  Marshall on 36 (16balls 5×6)  was struck plumb in front by Porter with the first ball of the twelfth over to make it 99 for 5 and the next ball and out of sort looking Gordon was run out strolling as if he didn’t care.  It was 105 for 7 when J. Thomas took a diving catch inches from the ground to dismiss Mowatt for 4 and with just the tail to come with Villagers still needing 16 from 12 balls it was another nerve rocking game for both teams.

It came down to 6 needed from the last over with Lawson at the top of his mark and the elderly Gayle on strike, with Lawson expected to bowl at his full pace it required a tactical move by Villagers to get the more reliable Adams on strike and from the first ball they stole a buy to the keeper who with Lawson’s pace was some 20 yards back, the next ball was dispatch over long-on by Adams as Villagers reached their target with 4 balls to spare.

Bartley finished with 2 for 14 from 3overs and there was a wicket apiece for Lawson (1 for 24 from 2.2) J. Thomas (1 for 19 from 2) Porter (1 for 9 from 2) as McLeish and Linden St Louis went wicket less with figures of 0 for 28 from 2 and 0 for 17 from 3.

Final score Westbury 120 for 4 from 20 overs and Villagers 122 for 7 from 19.2 overs.

Final at Floyd Bennett
On a sunny fall afternoon Cosmos captain Dr. Sham Ali won the toss and opted to take first strike. Opening pair of Keddy Lesporis and Faizal Taj added 26 in 4 overs before Taj 5 was bowled by Marshall. D. Sooden fresh from his half century in the masters final the previous day lasted only one ball as he drove without license to Mowatt at extra-cover off the bowling of a penetrative Staple. Dehan Siddique came and went for 6 and when Lesporis 28 (21 balls 3×4) was caught at short third man by Leberth Williamson off Gayle’s bowling to make it 46 for 4 in 8 overs it was advantage Villagers.

George Adams and Richard Staple celebrate.

Veteran Sohan Dass who also had a good masters final outing shared in a 41 runs partnership with Abrar Ali who made 21 (27balls 1×4) before he was caught by Adams off the first ball of the sixteenth over bowled by Williamson who had Cyril Choy next ball caught by Marshall to make it 87 for 6, the hat trick ball was negotiated by A Choudhury but was put down next ball by Marshall in what was a dream over by the dread locks Williamson. Choudhury went on to make 7 before he was seventh man out caught by Roye off Massiah bowling at 102 for 7 in the seventeenth over. Dass was joined by captain Ali and the pair added 28 from 20 balls when Ali was run out of the last ball of the innings for 14 (12 balls 1×4) and Dass was unbeaten on a top score of 39 (33balls 2×4 1×6) as the inning folded at 130 for 8 from allotted 20 overs.

Bowling for Villagers; Adams 0 for 27 from 3 overs, Marshall 1 for 16 from 3 overs, Staple 2 for 19 from 4 overs, Gayle 1 for 20 from 4 overs, Massiah 1 for 35 from 4 overs and Williamson 2 for 12 from 2 overs.

Needing 131 for victory at 6.55 for their third hold on the 6 year old trophy and complete a historic unbeaten season Villagers openers Staple and Kingston stroll to the crease to do battle. Both openers were held in check by left arm orthodox Ricky Kissoon and right arm medium swingman Dass as the score was 21 after 6 overs with the run rate climbing it was concerns in the Villagers camp and Roye himself became a messenger as he run onto the field. With the message clear to try and opt the tempo, Staple 10 (19balls 1×4) obliged but only succeed in skiing one to Choudhury from the second ball of the seventh over bowled by Kissoon who jumped for joyed 3 balls later when he disturbed Kingston 8 (22balls 1×4) furniture to make it 21 for 2. The delight on the face of the Cosmos players became brighter when with the pressure mounting Massiah 8 (9balls) was caught on the long-off boundary by Choudhury off a clearly happy Taj who run to meet the catcher.  Marshall was joined by his captain and it became the Marshall show as the 31 year old St Ann Jamaica native who made his mark on USA soil at this same venue in 2006 against a touring West Indies team led by Brain Lara when he stroke a magnificent 90 from 59 balls. Marshall on this occasion treated the fear size crowd with a gem of an innings as he led a Villagers fight back. Brukkie as he is called around cricket parks was in a no-nonsense mode playing one of the best   MCL twenty20 innings to date. Marshall and Roye added 67 from 42 balls before Roye 14 (20 balls) seaming got himself out when he skipped down the track and when beaten made no effort to get back to be out stump off the bowling of Lesporis at 107 for 4 18.1 overs.  In fading lights semifinal hero Adams also a St Ann boy who has represented the USA joined Marshall and immediately turns the strike over in an over that cost 15 runs.  With 8 runs need from the last over it was advantage Villagers for the first time in the chase. The first ball was a dot to Adams but Villagers case was aided when A. Ali whose action came under scrutiny bowled a wide down the leg-side with the alerted pair crossing on 3 occasions to add 4 to the total and when Marshall grab a single from the second legal ball it was 3 needed from 4 balls, like he did in the semi it was Adams who had the distinction of striking the winning run cramming the next ball for 4 between mid-off and extra-cover as the Villagers players, management and supporters ran onto the field in celebration as Marshall was hailed a hero as everyone in the ground went to high-five him. Marshall unbeaten inning of 66 came from 40 balls in 80 minutes laced with 3×4 and 6×6, Adams contribute 8 (5 balls 1×4).

Bowling for Cosmos; Kissoon 2 for 10 from 4 overs, Dass 0 for 15 from 4 overs, A. Ali 0 for 40 from 3.3 overs, Taj 1 for 24 from 4 overs and Lesporis 1 for 42 from 4 overs.

Final score Cosmos 130 for 8 from 20 overs and Villagers 132 for 4 from 19.3 overs.
After the game NYMDCA President Trevor Walfall presented a pair of batting glove each to Lesporis of Cosmos and Marshall of Villagers. It was a wonderful day of cricket with the only disappointment been the no present of a trophy for the champion. Villagers players and management team headed by Hugh Pitter who had a couple of his fellow Villagers founding members Sam Belnavis and Charles Simpson who travelled from Jamaica for the final spent a few hours at the ground after the match to reminisce on a successful season. Team manager Venelda Wallace use the opportunity to thank some of her support staff headed by Keith Sang, Rubby Harrisingh and Elvis Hill to name a few, she also congratulate Roye and thank  Massiah who many acquitted as a main stay in the Villagers team both on the field and in the dressing room. Villagers’ record for the season reads; play 19, win 18, lose 0 and tie 1

On the behalf of newyorkcricket.com congratulations to Villagers on a great season.

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