By Peter Della Penna
In a low scoring match, Global CC captain Neil McGarrell took his
team team to a third consecutive Millennium Cricket League title,
defeating South Gujarat CC by 5 wickets in the Division A 40 over final
played on Saturday at Weston Road in Somerset, N.J. McGarrell was named
Man of the Match after he took 3 for 17 before scoring 33 not out to
cap the match for Global, reaching the target of 130 with 20 balls to
In addition to winning the Division A playoff title, Global also
finished at the top of the league after the regular season, losing only
one match by 44 runs to SGCC. This is the third year in a row that
Global has won both the regular season and playoff titles in MCL.
“I think this one is a bit sweeter because we played this team a
few times and they keep giving us a fight all the time,” said McGarrell
when asked how this victory compared to Global’s other titles. “I think
they gave us an extra fight in the final although it was a small total
that they gave us to chase.”
With the finals win, Global denied SGCC the chance to complete a
Saturday and Sunday league double after SGCC won the Cricket League of
New Jersey Sunday league championship on September 26.
SGCC won the toss and elected to bat on a cool morning with a damp
outfield. North and central New Jersey had experienced heavy rains and
flooding in the days prior to the final, but the field had dried enough
to allow for the match to take place.
Image: Global CC poses with the MCL Division A trophy after
winning their third straight league title. [Courtesy: Peter Della Penna]
After 10 overs, SGCC looked like they had made the right decision
with openers Uday and Hiten Patel taking the team to 48 for 0. But on
the first ball of the 11th over, Uday Patel drove medium
pacer Theron Blair straight to McGarrell at short cover to depart for
27. The wicket sparked a startling collapse. By the end of the 20th over, SGCC had fallen to 70 for 7.
“We’ve played them a few times before so we know the basics of
their batting,” said McGarrell. “They score runs up front. Once you put
pressure on them, once one wicket falls, you know you can get a few
wickets rapidly. I think the bowlers bowled well today and the catchers
backed them up in the field.”
McGarrell and fellow left arm spinner Kumar Nandlal did the
majority of the damage. On McGarrell’s very first delivery, he got
Hiten Patel to give a regulation edge to Mukesh Sookram at slip as
Patel fell for 15. Nandlal then removed Vimal Lad without scoring by
taking a low return catch.
Saurin Parikh ran himself out for none when he failed to come back
for an easy second run on a ball lofted over cover by Priyesh Shah.
Shah was going to be gone as both men wound up at the same end, but
Parikh wisely left his crease as the ball was thrown to McGarrell over
the stumps at the bowler’s end, sacrificing himself to allow the set
batsman Shah to continue.
Nandlal claimed two more wickets and McGarrell his second before
Shah was joined by captain Mehul Goswami and the two fought to bring
respectability back to the innings. They wound up producing the highest
partnership of the match, putting on 56 runs for the eighth wicket.
Goswami was finally dismissed when he tried to hit the off-spin of
Sudesh Dhaniram out of the ground and was caught on the long off
boundary by Nandlal for 26.
Harshit Patel was runout for 1 four balls later when Shah edged a
McGarrell delivery to slip and was dropped. The ball ricocheted away
and Patel wanted to take a single, but Shah didn’t move. Wicketkeeper
Prashad Mahadeo alertly chased after the ball and fired it to
McGarrell, who flicked off the bails to send Patel on his way. Two
balls later, Shah tried to late cut McGarrell to keep the strike but
wound up chopping the ball onto his stumps to be last man out, top
scoring with 39 for SGCC. Global had bowled out SGCC for 129 in 34
overs and it appeared that the match would be wrapped up fairly shortly.
However, SGCC fought very hard in the field to make Global earn
the title. Hiten Patel opened the bowling and in his second over got
Sean Stanislaus to edge a drive to second slip where a catch was well
taken by Uday Patel and Stanislaus left for 1 to make it 6 for 1. In
Hiten Patel’s next over, he accounted for Mahadeo as a short of a
length ball on the legs popped up off the shoulder of the bat to
Goswami at square leg and Mahadeo was gone for 6 to make it 12 for 2.
Darshan Patel bowled back to back maidens to keep the pressure on
and the score was 15 for 2 after eight overs. But in a chase where
every run mattered, left arm spinner Harshit Patel came on and bowled a
disastrous 13-run first over in which eight runs came off wides to
allow Global CC room to breathe again.
Just as soon as the pressure was released, SGCC put it right back
onto Global by taking two wickets with the score on 43. Sookram was
bowled by Jaymin Goswami for 6 before Darshan Patel had Dhaniram caught
behind for 18 with a beautiful delivery that rose sharply off the pitch
to take the glove through to the keeper and SGCC was right back into
McGarrell then combined with Shawn Thompson to put on 39 runs
before Hiten Patel came back to trap him LBW for 8. Drinks were taken
at the fall of the wicket with the score at 82 for 5 in 26 overs.
Global still needed 48 to win in 14 overs with McGarrell on 24 in 45
balls and Nandlal due to join him after play resumed.
Global was looking shaky as the maidens started to pile up. The
man chiefly responsible for that was Mehul Goswami. The off-spinner
bowled a valiant spell, taking 0 for 11 in eight overs with four
maidens. On the first ball after drinks, he got McGarrell to offer an
edge to the keeper Parikh, but the chance went down and with it so did
SGCC’s chances of victory.
Nandlal took a few overs to get his eye in, making a cautious
start which saw the run rate rise and after 31 overs, the score was 88
for 5 with 42 needed in nine overs remaining. Despite good spells from
Hiten and Darshan Patel as well as the Jaymin and Mehul Goswami, SGCC
was a bowler short on the day and Nandlal seized on this to plunder 28
of the final 42 runs needed for victory. Nandlal hit the winning runs
with a two in the 37th over to seal the match.
SGCC bowled eight maidens on the day compared to only three by
Global. However, Global never conceded 10 or more runs in an over the
entire day whereas SGCC did it on four occasions. Extras were also
incredibly costly to SGCC as they made up 28 of the 130 runs in
Global’s winning total, including 19 wides.
Millennium Cricket League (NJ) 40 over Final
Global CC vs. South Gujarat CC
Global CC won by 5 wickets
SGCC won the toss and elected to bat
Man of the Match: Neil McGarrell
Batsman Runs Balls 4s 6s Dismissal
U Patel 27 40 1 0 ct McGarrell b Blair
Hiten Patel 15 22 1 0 ct Sookram b McGarrell
P Shah 39 66 3 0 b McGarrell
V Lad 0 12 0 0 ct & b Nandlal
S Parikh+ 0 3 0 0 runout (Thompson/McGarrell)
J Goswami 1 2 0 0 LBW Nandlal
R Patel 1 2 0 0 ct McDonald b Nandlal
V Patel 3 6 0 0 ct Mahadeo+ b McGarrell
M Goswami* 26 51 1 0 ct Nandlal b Dhaniram
Harshit Patel 1 1 0 0 runout (Mahadeo+/McGarrell)
D Patel 0 0 0 0 not out
Total Extras 16 (1 no ball, 1 bye, 5 leg byes, 9 wides)
Team Total 129 all out in 34 overs
Fall of Wicket: 48/1 (U Patel), 48/2 (Hiten Patel), 52/3 (Lad),
59/4 (Parikh), 61/5 (J Goswami), 63/6 (R Patel), 70/7 (V Patel), 126/8
(M Goswami), 129/9 (Harshit Patel), 129/10 (Shah).
Global CC Bowling Overs-Maidens-Runs-Wickets
T Blair 7-1-21-1
D McDonald 5-0-26-0
N McGarrell 7-2-17-3
K Nandlal 7-0-26-3
S Thompson 4-0-20-0
S Dhaniram 4-0-13-1
Batsman Runs Balls 4s 6s Dismissal
P Mahadeo+ 6 11 1 0 ct M Goswami b Hiten Patel
S Stanislaus 1 10 0 0 ct U Patel b Hiten Patel
S Dhaniram 18 25 3 0 ct S Parikh+ b D Patel
M Sookram 6 26 1 0 b J Goswami
N McGarrell* 33 75 2 0 not out
S Thompson 8 40 0 0 LBW Hiten Patel
K Nandlal 30 34 1 2 not out
Total Extras 28 (1 no ball, 5 byes, 3 leg byes, 19 wides)
Team Total 130 for 5 in 36.4 overs
Did not bat: N Shaikh, J Reddy, D McDonald, T Blair.
Fall of Wicket: 6/1 (Stanislaus), 12/2 (Mahadeo), 43/3 (Sookram), 43/4 (Dhaniram), 82/5 (Thompson).
SGCC Bowling Overs-Maidens-Runs-Wickets
Hiten Patel 8-2-26-3
V Lad 1-0-5-0
D Patel 7.4-2-23-1
Harshit Patel 3-0-21-0
M Goswami 8-4-11-0
J Goswami 8-0-26-1
U Patel 1-0-10-0