By Sam Sooppersaud
Cricket fans, please mark this date on your cricket calendars: Sunday, October 1, 2017. Take care of all the chores that you have to do around the house. (Don’t get the Missus mad at you). Call some friends, pack a cooler, cook up your favorite dishes. Hey, you may even want to make it a family picnic, but be there if you want to enjoy two games of exhilarating T20 cricket.
The two games to be played would be the Eastern American Cricket Association’s (EACA) 2017 T20 Tournament finals: both “A” and “B” divisions. The “B” Division game starts at 10:00 AM with the Scorpion Cricket Club opposing the Phantom Cricket Club. Both clubs are evenly matched, at least on paper. Both clubs have also played excellent cricket during the season and each is resolved to “whip” their opponent. In this format of the game, nothing is predictable. Anything can happen. In one over, one team could be seen as being in an unbeaten position, only to see itself slide adversely in the next over.
The finals in the “A” Division commences at the conclusion of the first game. It is approximated to be about 1:30 PM. Two power house of cricket teams meet in this game: The hard hitting Galaxy Cricket Club taking on Liberty-Richmond Hill Sports Club. The finest (and youngest) cricket players in the New York metropolitan area will be plying their skills. The likes of Akshay Homraj, who has scored two consecutive tons leading to, and in the playoffs so far. Just last week Sunday he scored a masterful 142 runs for his team. Then there is Zamal Khan, Rafeek Nazeer, Metray Balgobin, and not to forget the “not so younger guys” like Wahid Ward, Dominique Rikhi, Trevor Henry, Vijay Seonarine, and a host of other exciting players.
If you were at The Cage for last week Sunday’s semi-final, you would have been treated to some exhilarating batting performances. It seemed that boundaries and sixes were more frequently hit than ones and twos. Missiles were flying “all over the place”. No less is expected this coming Sunday. So do not miss out! I know that the Dada/Shiv stand, next to the handball courts, will be filled to capacity. Plans are already in the making to crown the new and “exclusive” Sam’s Senior Citizens Stand located next to the commentary box of Lenny Achaibar and Carl Bennett. This stand was created by the two commentators last week Sunday. All in fun!
Added incentives have been allocated for the games. In addition to the trophies, monetary awards will be presented to the winners, and the runners-up, all this through the sponsorship and kind courtesy of Mr. Hafeez Ali of the Rockaway Group of Companies. The winners in the “B” Division will walk away with $1000 in cash. The winners of the “A” Division gets $1500, while the runner-up in each division will walk away with $500 each.
It is expected that additional gratuities will be given to players with exceptional performances. The trophies for the games are sponsored by James Manbahal of Manbahal Custom Homes, Builders, Demolition Experts and General Contractors. Please support the sponsors and their businesses: Rockaway Group of Companies -Rockaway Halal Restaurant, Rockaway VIP Car Service, and Royal Empress Hall, and of course Manbahal Custom Homes, Builders, Demolition Experts and General Contractors. It is through your patronage that they are able to sponsor and finance our cricket games.
I must say a few words here on behalf of Rudy Persaud, EACA President. Over the past eight years, Rudy has worked his “tail” off to get the organization to the position it enjoys at this time. Yes, he has had some very dedicated league officials over the years, but it appears that he is always working on this, and working on that, with no one at his side. The EACA can now boast of being one of the most efficiently run leagues in the New York area. At least it can boast of recruiting the clubs with the most dynamic young players around.
Of course, I cannot forget the dedicated cricket fans who come out week after week to support and cheer the players on. Without them I think our game would be just a dreary game, with no excitement, no fun, and no reason to even have a game. So fans come on out on Sunday and enjoy some good T20 cricket.