USA Cricketers

Pakistan Leads The Pack In Tournament

Syed Hussain collects his man-of-the-match award from tournament sponsor Hafeez Ali. Photo by Javed Ali.

Syed Hussain collects his man-of-the-match award from tournament sponsor Hafeez Ali. Photo by Javed Ali.

By Sam Sooppersaud | Bangladesh vs Guyana Scorecard | T&T vs Pakistan Scorecard
The sixth and final round of games of the Rockaway T20 New York Cricket Fiesta was played at the beautiful Baisley Pond Park Cricket Field, Queens, New York. on Saturday, July 23, 2016. Going in to the day’s games, three teams were tied for first place. Pakistan, Guyana, and Bangladesh each had 15 points. However, Pakistan was looked upon as the leader as they had a more favorable net run rate than their opponents. The fourth team in the tournament, Trinidad & Tobago, was on 5 points.

Guyana took on Bangladesh in the day’s opener. The winner would occupy the pedestal of having the highest number of points – so far – in the tourney.

Trinidad & Tobago, on the other hand, went in to their game against Pakistan knowing that a win would not put them in a more favorable position with regards to getting in to the playoffs.

However, the Pakistan/T&T game was a crucial one. A win for T&T meant that Pakistan would be relegated to a qualifying seeding. T&T was in the position of being a spoiler for Bangladesh or Guyana, with the winner of that latter encounter becoming the tournament leader, and booking an automatic berth in the finals.

Guyana took on Bangladesh and took to the middle first, losing their hard-hitting left-hander Derek Narine, with the score on just 11. The other opener Renrick Batson, went soon after.  Both fell playing injudicious shots. Muneshwar Patadin (25), Akshay Homraj (21), and Terence Madramoottoo (31), helped Guyana to reach 161 runs in their 20 overs of batting. It was a challenging, but not an unattainable total.

Bowling for his team, Syed Hussain got a Fiver – 5 for 34. M Kamruzzman, Abu Shaddik, Mohammed Choudhury and Robin Das, each claimed one wicket for 18, 13, 23, and 27 runs, respectively.

In reply Bangladesh sent out Fayzal Ahmed and Mohammed Nazir, and immediately Ahmed announced his arrival by hitting the first ball for a boundary.  Bangladesh lost its first wicket with the score on 17. Third man in, Arif Islam (40), and Nazir (43) pounded the Guyanese bowlers. By the time they were separated, Bangladesh had the game in the bag. A quick-fire 19, in 7 balls, sealed the Guyanese fate.  Bangladesh overtook the Guyanese score with four balls remaining in the 20th over.

Spinners Andre Kirton, 3 for 33, and Michael Noble 2 for 35, M. Patadin 1 for 11, and D. Persaud 1 for 24 were the successful Guyana bowlers.

With the win over the Guyanese, Bangladesh claimed the top spot in the tournament.

Pakistan opener Umar Farooq slammed 98 from 29 deliveries. Photo by Shiek Mohamed

In the second game on the day, Pakistan opposed Trinidad & Tobago, with T &T winning the toss and taking first strike.  The bowling attack of the Pakistanis was too much for T&T to handle. Wickets fell continuously with small increments to the score. Only Salim Khan (51) and Jameel Khan (30) offered any meaningful resistance to the steady bowling.  An eighth wicket partnership of 22 put some sort of respectability on the T&T score. The other batsmen simply came to the wicket, scored a few runs, and left. The innings folded at 153 for 9.

Accounting for the T&T wickets were Wasim Aktar, 4 for 29, Zafar Khan, 2 for 37, and M. Nosh, 2 for 23. There was one run-out.

It took Pakistan only 10.3 overs to hit off the runs needed for victory. Umar Farooq was at his belligerent best. He slammed 10-6’s and 8-4’s on his way to 98 not out in the 29 balls he faced. Contributing to their winning cause was Shazad Shahid (17), and Amad Bilal (17). Team T&T was comprehensively outplayed.

So severe was the beating that Farooq put on the ball, that people on the sidelines were in the way of being hurt by the cricket ball. The District of Canje in Guyana was holding its annual “Canje Day” get-together in the park adjacent to the playing area, and Farooq was hitting the ball so fiercely that the tournament administrators approached the umpires and requested that bowling be done only from the Baisley Park end of the wicket. This was done in order to prevent anyone getting hurt from being hit by the cricket ball.

Having won the game, Pakistan once again took their spot at the “head of the table”. Both Bangladesh and Pakistan have 20 points, but, Pakistan is ahead by virtue of a better net run rate, and is propelled into the finals. Pakistan will play the winner of the Guyana vs. Bangladesh semi-final. The semi-final and championship final games will be played on Saturday, August 20, 2016, at the Baisley Pond Park Cricket Field.

Cricket fans, the best in the Rockaway T20 NY Cricket Fiesta is yet to come, and if you have followed the tournament thus far; or if you have not seen any of the games, do not miss the next two games.

The tournament organizers are aiming to reestablish the era of competitive cricket by representative national teams from the top playing nations in international cricket, and it starts with a Rockaway T20 New York Cricket Fiesta champion being crowned on Saturday, August 20, 2016.

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