By John L. Aaron
It was a takedown of sorts last Sunday at 88th Street and Seaview Avenue in Canarsie, Brooklyn, as Westbury Cricket Club pushed Atlantis Cricket Club – NY southwards on the Metropolitan League’s points table.
With the resumption of the league’s Clement “Buster” Lawrence 40-Overs Premier League tournament, it was four of the league’s leading contenders clashing in Brooklyn. Atlantis squared off against Westbury in Canarsie, while Villagers Sports Club engaged Queens United Sports Club at the Roy Sweeney Cricket Oval.
The Atlantis vs. Westbury match-up had the makings of an epic battle, with the opening pairs for both clubs posting 50 plus runs in the power-play segment for the loss of just one wicket each. Atlantis won the toss and opted to be the hare to Westbury’s tortoise, except it was the Westbury tortoise who set the pace by accepting the challenge and batting first, with the confident Atlantis hare that could not catch up and lost the race by 65 runs.
Westbury posted 228 for 6 in the 30-overs reduced race. Richard Allen, 42, c. Giovanni Letren b. Ronaldo Ali Mohammed and Mario Lawrence, 21, c. Demetrius Adams b. Dillon Bourne posted an opening partnership of 58 before Allen departed in the 10th over. It was a decent start to a hot, sweaty, muggy day in the open. All Westbury batters posted double-figures and were supported by Extras with 17. Skipper Horace Porter led with 47 (2x6s, 4x4s), not out batting at number seven. Carlos Green contributed 32, and Kevin Stoute, 23. The Westbury wickets fell at 58, 86, 87, 129, 190, and 161.
Bowling for Atlantis: Ackeel Hoyte, in his role as a part-time bowler and thrown the ball by skipper Randall Wilson, led the pack with figures of 6-0-49-3. Ronaldo Ali Mohammed enjoyed 2 for 38 off his six overs.
It was now Atlantis’ turn to chase down the tortoise’s posted total of 7.6 runs per over. Doable, given Atlantis’ deep batting lineup, yes. However, on Sunday, Atlantis was not firing on all eleven cylinders, as the team struggled to field an entire squad, a result of injuries and the unavailability of some players. The team knew they started behind the line but opted to get out of the blocks with a solid response of 55 for one in the first nine overs. That bested the Westbury opening partnership by an average of .55 runs per over. Statistically, just slightly ahead of Westbury’s opening pair, but ahead and on track to outrun the Westbury tortoise. The bowlers on the tortoise team had other ideas, choking the Atlantis middle-order that lost three wickets in two overs, posting just nine runs in the process. At that stage, the tortoise realized it had won the race, and all that was left was for the proverbial fat lady to sing the closing anthem from the winner’s podium.
All-rounders Giovanni Letren and overseas registrant Ronaldo Ali Mohammed played a requiem duo for the lost soul of Atlantis by posting 31 off 36 balls (4x4s), and 29 off 33 balls (2x6s, 1×4), respectively. Jonathan Doughlin, 17, and Antonio Handy, 17, wagged the tail for a short while. Still, it was too little too late, as the Atlantis inning closed out at 163 for seven in the allotted 30 overs. Extras chipped in 19 in Atlantis’ losing cause. The Atlantis wickets fell at 55, 66, 70, 120, 121, 129, and 157.
Bowling for Westbury: Overseas registrant Joseph Brown had Atlantis’ number dialing up 3 for 39 off his six overs, Kevin Stoute had 2 for 29, and Brandon English had one for 25 off his six overs.
Player-of-the-Match: Horace Porter.