Day 4 - NuWare New Jersey T20 Match Previews
Oct 10, 2008
In the NuWare New Jersey Twenty20, the battle for semi-final places is on with 7 teams in contention for the 4 slots. This weekend promises to be an exciting one and the weather too is much improved compared to the weekends past. DreamCricket is ensuring that scores of the various matches are posted to the NJT20.com website promptly. Steps are also being taken to provide live updates via EBC Radio during the crucial afternoon session.
Group A - the group that initially looked like it offered 'safe passage' for the top-seeded teams - has transformed into the 'group of death.' Five of the six teams are still in contention for the 2 semi-final slots - with Holmdel Hurricanes being the only team to have been mathematically eliminated. But Holmdel Hurricanes holds the fate of NJ Royals in their hands and after the batting heroics of Aby Joseph in their last match, they are surely looking to have an impact.
Saturday's fixtures include two games each for the Global Challengers, NJ Royals, Tri-state Argonauts and Edison Daredevils - all tied with 3 points each. Scientific calculators and nail-protectors are likely to be in great demand as the day draws to a close.
Despite the rain-out of two of their matches, the Knights floored the gad-pedal last weekend. With their impressive wins against NJ Royals and Global Challengers, they now need to focus on clinching a win against Daredevils. That will give them 8 points and ensure a passage into semis. Coach Fraser is confident that his boys will deliver.
Citibank sponsored Edison Daredevils are the surprise package in this tournament. And they know that they have their work cut out. They must defeat both their opponents - the Argonauts in the morning and the Knights in the afternoon - to take them to the safe haven of 8 points.
Both the erstwhile top-seeds - Argonauts and Challengers - faltered last Sunday and now need to tighten their belts. If they win their morning matches against Daredevils and Royals respectively, that will set them up for an afternoon must-win thriller.
For NJ Royals, who made a strong comeback in their second match, the choice is clear. They must win both their matches on Saturday and also hope that the results of the Daredevils matches goes in their favor. Meanwhile, their match against Challengers will surely be a nail-biter.
In Group B, the semi-final slots are a near certainty with the North Jersey Renegades taking the top spot and the Philadelphia Terminators in second place. The Terminators, having beaten the Indians in their league game, are mathematically a shoo-in but will surely want to solidify their semi-final claim by scoring a win their match against Somerset Cavaliers.
The Jersey Indians, who have displayed tremendous cricket spirit, are placed third after having lost a crucial match last Sunday. The Somerset Cavaliers also deserve kudos for the sportsmanship that they have displayed throughout the touranament. The other game in this group features the Mercer Warriors and Connecticut Patriots, which is academic at this stage.