By Zaheer Mohamed
Led by a resolute half century from opener Unnis Yusuf and an incisive spell from Tyrone Sanasie, Regal Masters defeated Fisherman Masters by four wickets to win the final of the Georgetown Softball Cricket League (GSCL) Inc Republic Cup T20 competition which was contested on Sunday last at the Demerara Cricket Club.
Sanasie grabbed 3-23 from four overs to help restrict Fisherman Masters for 139-6, batting first. Openers Robert Mohan
and Veerapen Moonsammy added 23 before David Harper provided Regal Masters with the breakthrough when he uprooted the stumps of Mohan for six. Without addition to the score, Moonsammy was dismissed off Laurie Singh for 14.
Ramesh Rambharose (14) and John Sumair (14) added 31 for the third wicket before the former was caught off Sanasie, while Sumair was taken off Singh as Regal Masters maintained their stranglehold on the contest.
Sanasie then disturbed the stumps of Troy Ramsaywack (00) and Z. Zikur (03), leaving Fisherman Masters in trouble at 61-6.
Fisherman Masters badly needed a partnership at this juncture and Stanley Mohabir and Dennis Mangru took the fight to the opposition with an unbroken seven-wicket stand of 78 to prop up the total. Mohabir struck one four and two sixes in a top score of 33, while Mangru made 31 with one four and one six. Singh finished with 2-37 while Harper was other wicket taker with 1-19.
Regal Masters were reduced to 6-2 in the chase as Devanan Khanan bowled Mahendra Hardyal (01) and Ramesh Deonarine (00), but Yusuf and Harper steadied the innings nicely with a third-wicket partnership of 59. The right-handed Yusuf showed his attacking prowess as he slammed eight fours and two sixes before he was bowled by Mohan for 52.
Harper was involved in another useful partnership with Khemchand Dindyal before he was removed by Mohan for 23 which included a solitary boundary. Fisherman Masters struck twice in quick succession as Mohabir removed Dindyal for 23 and Eon Abel (01) to give his team some hope, but Mohendra Arjune and Rudolph Baker steered the ship to safety as they put on an unbeaten seven-wicket stand of 34; Regal Masters ended on 140-6 in 17.3 overs. Arjune made 17 and Baker 15. Mohan, Khanan and Mohabir took two wickets each.
Earlier, Regal Masters beat Wellman Masters by 19 runs. Batting first, Regal Masters managed 206-5. Ramesh Deonarine stroked 84 while Baker made 37 not out, Yusuf 36 and Mahendra Hardyal 33. Imtiaz Mohamed and Wayne Jones took two wickets each.
Wellman Masters responded with 187-7. Hardat Heeranandan scored 59 while Troy Lewis made 26, Lloyd Ruplall 24, Greg De Franca 18 and Jones 16. Eric Thomas took 2-18.
Fisherman Masters beat East Coast Masters by 81 runs. Fisherman Masters batted first and posted 218-7. Robert Mohan made 52; Troy Ramsaywack scored 43 and Stanley Mohabir 20. East Coast Masters responded with 137 all out in 17.3 overs. Mohan took 3-13 and Pooran Singh 3-24.
Speaking at the presentation ceremony, Minister of Public Security Khemraj Ramjattan congratulated the winners and lauded the organsiers for their dedication. President of the GSCL Inc Ian John said that Regal Masters have played well, adding that this match is of much significance since it coincides with Guyana’s 50th Republic Anniversary. He said that the participating teams played competitive cricket not only in this tournament, but at the start of the season and Wellman Masters were the team to beat as they have shown significant improvement and this augurs well for the sport.
He spoke about the softball fixture next Friday at Providence between Regal All stars and Speedboat starting at 14:00hrs. He indicated that Regal will be hosting a fund raiser next weekend at GNIC SC to aid in their participation in the Orlando Cup which is set for March. John thanked Ramesh Sunich of Trophy Stall for this input towards the development of sport locally.
Captain of Regal Masters Mahendra Hardyal said he is happy with the win more so since they have had mixed fortunes recently. “In these major tournaments we have been showing our worth and today is of no exception.” He credited his players on their performance and noted that their experience played an important role in the win. Hardyal said that his team preparation for the Orlando Cup has been going well and sounded a warning to their rivals, stating that his players are eager to bring home the title and they will definitely take their ‘a game’ to that competition.
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