The first of four Zone finals in the historic Berbice Cricket Board (BCB) organised Sueria Manufacturing Magic Moments T20 Tournament was hosted at the No. 72 Cut and Load Cricket Ground.
Witnessed by a colourful and large crowd in a festive atmosphere, No. 48 Challengers defeated Skeldon Super Kings by 75 runs to lay their hands on the first Zone title. A total of 28 teams started the tournament which was for teams in the Upper Corentyne.
Playing the lone semifinal earlier in the day, Skeldon Super Kings defeated No. 72 All Stars by three wickets. No. 72 All Stars was bowled out for 73; Trishan Ramdass top scored with 18 for No. 72 while Totaram Rajaram grabbed 5-8, Sherain Murray 3-31 and Claude Felix 2-11, the best bowlers for Skeldon.
In reply, Skeldon struggled to 75-7 in 13.1 overs, Murray returning with the bat to score 29 while Pradeep Guben claimed 4-13 in a losing cause.
In the final, No. 48 Challengers blasted their way to 187-6 off their allotted 20 overs; Balram Persaud struck 43 not out, Terrence Budhoo 39 and Balram Samaroo 38. Junior Blair took 3-19 for Skeldon Super Kings which in response was bowled out for 112 in 15.3 overs.
Zakeel Gordon fought a lonely battle with 30, Totaram Persaud bowled a tight spell with his left arm spin to claim 4-11. At the impressive ceremony after the final, Lakeram Latchman of the Upper Corentyne Cricket Association hailed the rebirth of Berbice and Upper Corentyne cricket under the leadership of Hilbert Foster.
Latchman noted that Foster has brought a no-nonsense attitude and tireless work ethics to cricket leadership in Berbice. He told the audience that the BCB President has a policy of visiting matches in the Upper Corentyne area and most importantly is always available to listen to advice.
Foster hailed the festive atmosphere at the beautiful No. 72 Ground, with trees surrounding the venue. Cricket in Upper Corentyne, he stated would not be the same again as the Board would continue to invest heavily in the area not only in tournaments but in off the field programmes.
Foster pledged to take more major matches to venues in the Sub-Zone but cautioned clubs that discipline would be the corner stone of the BCB. Special thanks were expressed to Mr. Frank Sanichara, CEO of Sueria Manufacturing for his sponsorship and also to the Management of the No. 72 Cut and Load Cricket Ground for hosting the final.
The Winner, Runner-up and Man-of-the-Final received financial incentives and trophies. Three other finals for teams in Lower Corentyne, New Amsterdam/Canje and West Berbice would be held before the four Sub-Zone champions battle it out for the overall Berbice Championship.
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