Folklore has it that the lion is the king of the jungle, but that’s just what it is – folklore. In fights with a tiger, the lion loses most times. However, that was not the case last Sunday, as the quiet 1-2 Lions Cricket Club roared over the hereto ferocious 3-0 Atlantis Cricket Club – NY, at Canarsie Park 80th Street, Brooklyn, in the fourth fixture weekend of the Metropolitan Cricket League’s 2017 season.
Winning the toss and electing to bat, Atlantis was scuttled out for a paltry 87 under overcast skies and an intermittent drizzle. The Atlantis bats roaring in on a 3-0 record, appeared as docile and meek as domestic cats, compared to their larger-than-life lion counterparts – Lions Cricket Club.
Francis Mendonca was the first to head for the shed at the 19 run mark, having contributed a nickel including a penny. His opening partner Henderson Blades joined him 10 runs later, having himself posted only a dime in what appeared to be struggling times. The economy did not get any better as the Lions’ bowlers Howard Blake and James Sewell were on the prowl for wickets. The usually dependable Randall Wilson did not last long, succumbing to James Sewell for 3, caught behind by former West Indies wicket-keeper Kevin Baugh.
Just when it looked as though Atlantis would retreat in fear of the roaring Lions, the hard-hitting Ron Andrew stood his ground, posting a solid 43 (1×6, 3x4s). Apart from Blades’ 10, Andrew’s 43 was the only other double digit score off the Atlantis bats. Ron Andrew would look around the savannah for a partner with whom to hunt for some much-needed runs against the constant prowl of the lions, but they were few and far between with wickets falling around him. A brief cameo partnership with the veteran Kevin Darlington showed a glimmer of hope as the latter made every effort to build something out of nothing, and after the departure of Ron Andrew with the score on 81. However, less than 10 runs later, Atlantis brought its tent indoors.
The Atlantis wickets fell at 19, 29, 47, 47, 56, 65, 65, 81, 84 and 87. Bowling for Lions: Ballista McLeish had figures of 6.5-0-26-3, James Sewell and Howard Blake each grabbed two wickets for 15 and 24 respectively. Rodwell Busgith got 1 for 10 off 5 overs. There were two run-outs. With Atlantis bundled out for 87 in 22.5 overs, it looked like the day’s safari outing would be a brief one.
With the target set at 88, it was all over, except for the weight-watchers lady warming up her vocal chords; but hold on, not so fast. Atlantis’ opening pair came out roaring, with pacers Greg Robinson and Dillon Bourne pouncing early and often, entrapping three of their prey as the Lions scoreboard limped to 18 in the eight over. Robinson was the better hunter snaring two Lions with figures of 5-3-5-2. Bourne had 1 for 30 off 7 overs, while Keon Lake ended with figures of 4-0-13-1, as four Lions wickets fell on the team’s climb to 88 and the victory, in 27 overs.
Credit to Lions’ opener James Sewell posting a hard fought 31 off 52 deliveries. His stalwart contribution coupled with a middle-order effort of 29 not out off 63 balls from Yannick Elliott, was the difference in winning and losing. Elliott’s inning was one that should be emulated by most of the younger players in the league. The batsman hung around long enough and patiently enough to see his team home to victory.
The Lions wickets fell at 5, 5, 18, and 69. Bowling for Atlantis: Greg Robinson was the pick of the litter with 2 for 5, while the aforementioned Bourne and Lake each enjoyed a wicket apiece. There were 13 extras, same as Atlantis’ inning Extras column.
No doubt it is a match the 3-1 Atlantis would like to put in the rear view mirror of their safari truck, as they look down the trail to visit Pioneer next Sunday at the Roy Sweeney Oval in Brooklyn, then Progressive and Villagers on the horizon at Floyd Bennett Field on June 18 and 25 respectively.