By Orin Davidson
(Photo Gallery of the Game)
The Brooklyn League does not have many big name players, but they made up for lack of star power with team play to topple Commonwealth league and take home the Mayor’s Cup Twenty20 title for the first time Saturday.
Mayor Michael Bloomberg was expected to grace the final with his presence, but did not show up, thus causing a double whammy as the early 10.15 am start to accommodate him, resulted in a modest gathering of fans, showing up.
A later start would’ve been ideal for New York fans but it did not matter as Brooklyn league, who were also missing two key players, put aside the shortcomings to win comfortably by 26 runs at 80th Street, Canarsie Park. Commonwealth League, representing the Bronx, was at full strength with the likes of former West Indies face bowler Jermaine Lawson, and others including, Vejai Seonarine and Shabazz Ahmed in the lineup.
Brooklyn, however took the initiative from the get-go through Gregory Anthony who took the batting into his own hands and compiled a match winning half century to steer Brooklyn to a match winning 162 runs for seven wickets in their allotted 20 overs
Led by Alex Kirton and aided by Adam Sanford, who played 11 Test matches for West Indies, Brooklyn then restricted Commonwealth League to 136 runs for nine wickets in their allotted 20 overs.
Kirton bamboozled Commonwealth with his orthodox left arm spin, that stifled the batsmen and prevented them from putting up a weak response.
He ended with excellent figures of four wickets for 13 runs off his allotted four overs, Sanford supported with 1-16 from his four. Mark Audain and L. Douglas chipped in with 1-20 and 1-24 respectively and it did not matter that Brooklyn’s top paceman Dominic Audain and spinner Gavin Smith did not arrive on time and could not play.
Seonarine produced his usual solid batting, topscoring with 55 that included seven fours and one six, but the support was not forthcoming as none of his teammates were good enough to handle Brooklyn’s attack.
Earlier Anthony struck 72 that included six fours and three sixes, batting in the middle in a commanding innings that received good support from Romero Deane with 29 and Kester Sylvester 20.
Mohamed Nadir ended with fine figures of 2-13 and Lawson came good with 2-28, but it was by far the best effort from the other Commonwealth bowlers who could not provide the necessary assistance.
Captain Mark Audain, a former Windward Islands under-19 player, attributed his team’s success to them being more organized this year with their preparation. He said many of the players utilized the new indoor facility in Long Island during the winter that kept them sharp.
In an unusual twist officials were still pondering the Man of the Match award winner after the game, which is expected to be named this week.