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By Peter Della Penna
to bottom contributions for both Atlantic and New York saw each team to
a first day win on Friday afternoon at the USACA Eastern Conference
Tournament in Atlanta, Ga. Atlantic defeated South East by 6 wickets
while New York bounced North East by 104 runs.
Glen Hall (seen here at Radiant Info T20) was top scorer for New York as they defeated North East.
In the match played at McNair Middle School, South East won the
toss and elected to bat first against Atlantic. The first ball set the
tone for the sloppy fielding that was on display throughout the match
when Timothy Surujbally tickled a short delivery from Imran Awan down
the leg side but was dropped by wicketkeeper Sean Stanislaus.
South East then made use of the extra chance as Surujbally and
Farhat Ullah tore into Awan and George Adams. The opening batsmen raced
to 49 off six overs. Ullah was the more dominant of the two, striking
six boundaries on his way to 34.
Atlantic captain Neil McGarrell then brought himself on to bowl
left arm spin and on his third ball, he removed Ullah with a perfect
delivery that was edged to Aditya Mishra at first slip to make it 55
for 1. Surujbally fell four runs later for 12 to Durale Forest and from
there Atlantic did their best to take control of the match.
Japen Patel joined Steven Taylor at the wicket and the two put on
35 runs for the third wicket before Taylor was given out LBW for 17 to
Muhammad Ghous. Ricky Nayar came in and added 27 with Patel, but he was
runout for 11 to make it 121 for 4. Nayar drove a ball to long on and
set off for what should have been an easy two, but instead of running
hard the entire way, he jogged the second. Substitute fielder Junaid
Rasheed alertly fired a laser to Stanislaus over the stumps at the far
end and the bails were dislodged with Nayar comfortably short.
Moazzam Imtiaz came in next but didn’t stay for long. On the
second ball after the second drinks break, he charged McGarrell and was
beaten badly to be stumped for 4 and South East fell to 158 for 5.
Meanwhile, Patel stayed as long as he could despite offering at least
three chances that were not taken as well as slicing several balls off
the edge into no man’s land. He finally departed for 64 when he was
stumped off the bowling of Akhil Sehgal to make it 172 for 6.
“The spinners came into their own, bowling in the right areas,”
said McGarrell. “The wicket was a little slow so I figured the spinners
were gonna do a great job on the wicket.”
Atlantic vs. South East Post Match Interview with McGarrell & Forest from Peter Della Penna on Vimeo.
Anand Tummala was joined by Ken Singh with 12 overs still left to
play. Tummala looked well set at 17 to make a significant contribution,
but when he slapped a ball in front of point and set off for an easy
run, Singh kept his feet planted in the ground. Both men wound up at
the non-striker’s end while Charan Singh tossed the ball to Stanislaus
for a simple runout to make it 190 for 7.
With that, South East’s recognized batsmen were all gone and the
innings folded quickly. McGarrell took two more wickets to finish with
4 for 18 while Sehgal claimed a second and South East was bowled out
for 199 in 44.5 overs. They could have been bowled out for around 150
had Atlantic not dropped eight chances in the field.
“Blame it mainly on some of the fellas getting to the hotel late,”
said McGarrell when asked why the team performed the way they did in
the field. “So lack of sleep and I don’t think we had enough time to
have a practice so we could do some catches.”
As if taking their cues from the Atlantic fielding performance,
South East did them two better by grassing 10 chances. No one
benefitted more than opening batsman Siddharth Mehta. He offered his
first chance on 4 with the score at 11 when he slashed a delivery from
Tummala and was put down in the gully by Imtiaz. It was the first of
five lives he was given during his innings, but he made the most of
them. He put on 84 runs for the first wicket with Mishra before Mishra
was stumped by Taylor off the bowling of Nasir “Charlie” Javed for 45.
Singh came in next but left a short time later for 4 as Javed
bowled a half-tracker that was pulled straight to Surujbally at mid on
to make it 92 for 2 in 24 overs. Stanislaus fell for 1 to produce a
mini slide for Atlantic as spinner Hussain Haidar claimed him LBW to
make it 93 for 3. Mehta finally fell for 45, caught on the square leg
boundary by Imtiaz off another half-tracker to gift Javed his third
Forest and Ghous then teamed up to methodically guide their team
across the line with an 81-run unbeaten fifth wicket partnership. Ghous
made the most of a second chance when he was dropped by Taylor on 2 off
the bowling of Haidar. He went on to score 45 not out while Forest
top-scored with 46 not out to be named Man of the Match. Ghous hit the
winning single with nine balls to spare.
“My mindset was go out there, occupy the crease, play a
single-double role, rotate the strike and dispatch the bad ball,” said
In the match played at Creel Park, New York won the toss and
batted first against North East. New York finished 267 all out in 47.2
overs as no one crossed 50. Glen Hall’s 49 opening the innings was the
high score for New York while his opening partner Akeem Dodson
contributed 44. Denison Thomas chipped in with 43 at number seven to
give New York a late boost.
Several players got starts for North East, but no one could go on
to make a big score. Sharaz Baksh’s 32 was the top score for North
East. Teenager Jonathan Bonner scored 27 and Fazal Alam notched 17, but
all three were dismissed by Dwayne Smith, who finished with 3 for 32 to
help bowl North East out for 163 in 42 overs.
On Saturday, New York will take on Atlantic at Creel Park in a
battle of unbeatens. South East and North East will clash at McNair
Middle School as both teams hope to get their first win of the
tournament. At last year’s tournament in Washington, D.C., New York
embarrassed Atlantic on the final day, bowling them out for 82 in 27.3
overs before winning by 9 wickets. Forest was a member of that Atlantic
squad and is hoping his team will put up a better fight on Saturday
against the defending national champs.
“That’s in the back of my mind, last year, but we’re gonna try to
forget about that,” said Forest. “It’s a new year. We’re gonna go out
there and just from ball one apply pressure.”
Meanwhile, at the Western Conference in Los Angeles, South West
defeated North West convincingly on the Wong Field at Woodley. Batting
first, North West were in reasonably good shape at the start
accumulating 70 runs for the loss of two wickets before unraveling and
losing all their batsmen for 171 with 5 overs to spare. In the chase,
Tarun Bhoomireddy and Ravi Timbawala gave South West a solid start and
the opening partnership lasted into the 19th over yielding 90 runs.
Tarun, Ravi, Dionisius Mavrokefalos, Aditya Thyagarajan and Ali Shafi -
all contributed as they took the home side to their winning total of
174 for 3.
At the Marder Field, Central East batted first against Central
West and got off to a sputtering start losing Fahad Babar's wicket off
the third ball of the innings. Even as skipper Shahid Malik stood like
a rock, his mates lost wickets at regular intervals and the side was
bowled out for 172 in 48.3 overs. In the chase, Central West looked
solid in the beginning with opening batsmen Ryan Corns and Rahul
Kukreti helping their team reach 55 without loss in the 10th over at a
brisk pace. What followed was high drama as CE bowlers piled on the
pressure and the CW batsmen began to fall like nine pins. In the end,
they reached 169 and lost by a whisker.
To read about the Western Conference matches, please click here
Atlantic vs. South East
Atlantic won by 6 wickets
South East won the toss and elected to bat
Man of the Match: Durale Forest
South East Batting
Batsman Runs Balls 4s 6s Dismissal
T Surujbally 12 19 2 0 ct Stanislaus+ b Forest
F Ullah 34 31 6 0 ct Mishra b McGarrell
S Taylor+ 17 30 2 0 LBW Ghous
J Patel 64 91 3 2 st Stanislaus+ b Sehgal
V Nayar 11 30 0 0 runout (sub (Rasheed)/Stanislaus+)
M Imtiaz 4 16 0 0 st Stanislaus+ b McGarrell
A Tummala 17 24 1 0 runout (Singh/Stanislaus+)
K Singh 9 12 0 0 b McGarrell
D Nathaniel 7 7 0 1 LBW Sehgal
H Haidar 0 7 0 0 ct Stanislaus b McGarrell
N Javed* 0 3 0 0 not out
Total Extras 24 (0 no balls, 3 byes, 9 leg byes, 12 wides)
Team Total 199 all out in 44.5 overs
Fall of Wicket: 55/1 (Ullah), 59/2 (Surujbally), 94/3 (Taylor),
121/4 (Nayar), 158/5 (Imtiaz), 172/6 (Patel), 190/7 (Tummala), 192/8
(Singh), 198/9 (Nathaniel), 199/10 (Haidar).
Atlantic Bowling Overs-Maidens-Runs-Wickets
I Awan 3-0-18-0
G Adams 3-0-26-0
D Forest 6-0-23-1
N McGarrell 7.5-1-18-4
M Nisar 10-0-40-0
M Ghous 8-0-28-1
A Sehgal 7-0-34-2
Batsman Runs Balls 4s 6s Dismissal
S Mehta 45 83 5 0 ct Imtiaz b Javed
A Mishra 45 63 4 0 st Taylor+ b Javed
C Singh 4 11 0 0 ct Surujbally b Javed
S Stanislaus 1 9 0 0 LBW Haidar
M Ghous 45 62 2 0 not out
D Forest 46 64 4 0 not out
Total Extras 14 (0 no balls, 2 byes, 1 leg bye, 11 wides)
Team Total 200 for 4 in 48.3 overs
Did not bat: N McGarrell*, M Nisar, G Adams, A Sehgal, I Awan.
Fall of Wicket: 84/1 (Mishra), 92/2 (Singh), 93/3 (Stanislaus), 119/4 (Mehta).
South East Bowling Overs-Maidens-Runs-Wickets
K Singh 6-0-30-0
A Tummala 8-0-32-0
H Haidar 10-1-32-1
N Javed 10-1-33-3
T Surujbally 8-0-37-0
V Nayar 5-0-26-0
M Imtiaz 1.3-0-7-0