Regal to contest all three finals of President’s Softball T20 Cup
By Akeem Greene
The Regal camp will be eyeing the possibility of a clean sweep after they qualified for all three finals in the inaugural President’s Softball T20 Cup on Saturday in Georgetown.
In the Legends (Over-50) final, they will face Parika Defenders, while in the Masters (Over-40), they will battle Wellman Masters. In the All-Stars (Open), they will clash with rivals Speedboat, all at the Everest Cricket Club on Sunday.
Regal Legends comfortably won their semi-final by nine wickets against President’s XI at the Demerara Cricket Club.
They restricted the opposition to 103-4 in their allotment of 20 overs due to a combined bowling effort led by Laurie Singh (2-21), Parsram Persaud (1-11) and David Harper (1-20).
Peter Persaud top-scored for President’s XI with 33 (2x6s; 2x4s) and got support from Dhamendra Mohabir (17) and Tony Fernandes (16).
In response, Regal blazed to 106-1, led by an unbeaten 52 from Mahesh Chunilall, and 37 from Eion Abel. Chunilall struck five fours in his enterprising innings, which allowed Regal to reach their target in 15.1 overs.
The other semi-final was contested between Parika Defenders and Wellman Masters at the Muslim Youth Organisation ground, and it proved to be a thriller.
Parika were bowled out 192 in 19.5 overs and at the halfway stage, it seemed they were clear-cut favourites, but an early assault by Wellman’s opening pair Lloyd Ruplall and Shadeo Budhu proved threatening.
The duo added 63 in five overs. Budhu was the first to go for 22, while Ruplall made 33 which got Wellman up to 92-2 after 10 overs. Parika however, pulled it back with Wellman slipping to 134-4 in 15 overs.
It went down to 35 being needed off the final three overs and 23 off the final, but it was still too steep a mountain to climb for Wellman, ended on 186-7. Other significant contributions came from Nandram Samlall (25) and Gopaul Deen (26).
Ramo Malone (3-30), Uniss Yusuf (2-15) and Ramesh Narine 2-25 were the pick of the bowlers for Parika.
Earlier, Narine started his all-round day with a cracking 94, striking seven maximums and eight fours. Malone supported with 62, while Yusuf made 19. Imtiaz Mohamed and Lester Thom had identical figures of 3-31.
In the Masters category, Regal had another stroll as they won by nine wickets against Ariel Masters, who they routed for 82 in 18.4 overs.
Mohammed Ayume took 2-24 and Roy Persaud had 2-14. Regal, in response, raced to 83-1 in 7.4 overs, led by opener Chien Gitten with an unbeaten 61.
The other semi-final was another one-sided contest as Wellman Masters posted 181-7 then bowled out Fisherman Masters for 144 in 18.3 overs.
Rawl Reid topped the batting for Wellman with 65 and Greg DeFranca made 43; Danny Thomas took 3-25. Only Dubraj Singh with 25 was able to muster a fight to Wellman as Anil Durga took 5-25 in the 37-run triumph.
All Stars (Open)
In the Open division, Regal pulled off a one-wicket victory over Venom All Stars. Their pursuit of 158 was achieved in the 18th over. Rickey Sargent made 42 and Sewchand Budhu made 29, which kept Sachin Persaud at bay; Persaud took 2-10.
Venom made 157-8 from their 20 overs, led by Akeem Vieria with 31 and Dhanraj Singh with 21; Ravindra Ramnauth took 4-30 and Karamchand Persaud 2-15.
Meanwhile, Speedboat posted 240-5 in their contest with Coss Cutters All Stars, which was reduced to 18 overs due to a late start.
Navin Singh, with a blistering 105, led the way for Speedboat and Wazim Hussin and Vickash Dhaniram chipped in 43 and 32 respectively; Arif Samad took 2-38.
In response, Coss Cuttters folded for 136 all out in 15.4 overs with a top score of 36 from Ajay Persaud; Safraz Hussain had 2-12 and Mark Harold 2-22.
The three-day tournament is a collaboration between the Georgetown Softball Cricket League Inc. and Guyana’s Honorary Consul- Florida, Ramzan Roshanah Ali.
The winning team in each of the three categories will pocket $500,000 and runners-up $100,000, while prizes will be awarded to Man-of-the-Series in each division and Man-of-the-Match.
The Legends and Masters final will both be played from 09:00h, followed by the Open championship game at 13:00h.