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New York Destroyers Are Crowned Radiant Info USA Twenty20 Champions!

Sept. 9th, 2009 | Gallery
The Bedessee New York Destroyers scored an upset victory in the finals of the Radiant Info USA Twenty20 against the well-established favorites Global Challengers of Greater NY. New York took home $5,000 in cash and a glittering trophy presented by Radiant Info. Global Challengers took home $2,000 and the runners-up trophy presented by Headstrong.

Winning team, New York Destroyers. (Photo by Shiek Mohamed)

The Radiant Info USA Twenty20, which began with a ceremonial pitch by Honorable Upendra Chivukula, Deputy Speaker of the New Jersey General Assembly, ended in the most spectacular manner in the grand finale on Monday, September 7, 2009.

Speaking about the tournament's success, Venu Myneni, CEO of Radiant Info, the tournament's title sponsor, said: "Congratulations to all the teams for their fantastic performances and to DreamCricket.com for its pioneering effort in USA cricket. No effort was spared to make this a benchmark tournament in USA. I thoroughly enjoyed watching the games over the last three days and I am sure that many Americans, if they are presented with an opportunity to enjoy the sport in this manner, will also come under the spell of the Twenty20 format."

The final was a thrilling low-scoring affair which gave the fans and spectators some nail-biting moments - a routine feature in the Twenty20 match format. The Challengers were bowled out for 94 as Barrington Bartley - the captain of New York and Team USA international cricketer - bowled a stunning 3 over spell in which he got 3 wickets for 6 runs showing that his previous tally of 3 for 13 in the semi-finals against New Jersey Daredevils was not a fluke.

In the chase, New York got 60 of the required 95 runs in just 12 overs without losing a wicket. That turned out to be too much of a good thing and Challengers skipper Neil McGarrell, a former West Indies international cricketer, helped his side stage a magnificent comeback as the Destroyers were reduced to 89 for 7. With seven balls left to go and needing six runs, New York and USA cricketer Akeem Dodson kept his cool and scored a boundary in the last ball of the penultimate over. Javain Thomas followed suit with a boundary to deliver the championship to the Destroyers.

The Group Stage which featured six teams saw the elimination of Gentlemen of Philadelphia and Washington Senators, the former on the basis of Net Run Rate.

In the first semi-final on Sunday, New Jersey failed to capitalize on the good start provided by skipper Siddharth Mehta (23), former Baroda Under-19 cricketer, and Aditya Mishra (50), former Karnataka Ranji cricketer. Chasing 108, New York did not break a sweat as Akeem Dodson (45) and skipper Barrington Bartley (28 not out) ensured an easy win. The second semi-final saw Global Challengers, led by Neil McGarrell, former Guyana captain and West Indies international cricketer, put up an impressive score of 142 for 8, which the New England Pioneers led by Fazal Alam, the captain of the North East region, found hard to beat.

This shot from Akeem Dodson (above) would ease the tension in the NY Destroyers (below) camp, as it would race to the boundary and ensure victory. (Photos by Shiek Mohamed)

The six teams in the Radiant Info USA Twenty20 featured several talented domestic cricketers and a good number of international cricketers who call USA their home. The matches were attended by a large number of spectators and attracted TV and radio coverage from USA and India. DreamCricket.com provided live text commentary throughout the event via the event website - USOpenCricket.com

Players and officials attended a banquet on Sunday evening sponsored by Demerara Distillers, where the Chief Guest was Balwinder Singh Sandhu, a member of the Indian team that won the 1983 World Cup. John L. Aaron, Secretary of USA Cricket Association and Shelton Glasgow, Regional Representative of the Atlantic Region, presented Mr. Sandhu with a plaque thanking him for his involvement in USA cricket. Mr. Aaron spoke about the reemergence of cricket in the USA, the objectives and vision of the national organization, and asked everyone to cheer for USA's Under-19 team that was well on its way to qualifying for the ICC Under-19 World Cup in New Zealand.

The tournament marked several firsts including the first time third umpires were used for all matches in a Twenty20 tournament in USA, the first Twenty20 event in USA where all matches were covered live via the internet, and for the first time, all umpires were ICC-approved.

In a sign of things to come, all but two teams were sponsored by corporates. These included - Global Data sponsored the Challengers of Greater New York, Bedessee Sports were the sponsors for New York Destroyers, Strategic Oxygen for New England Pioneers, and Ceera Investments for Gentlemen of Philadelphia.

At the award ceremony following the final, trophies were presented to the top performers. Speaking on the occasion, Ms. Kranthi Bayya, CEO of DreamCricket.com said: "In a game like cricket, it is not only individual accomplishments must be viewed in the context of team performance. This year, We also want to celebrate the real reason for being here - the spirit of cricket."

Ms. Bayya announced the Reebok Cricket Spirit Award to Washington Senators for the manner in which they conducted themselves from the time they were invited. A second Reebok Cricket Spirit Award was presented to Global Challengers for helping ensure that the ground was in a great condition.

The winners of the various individual awards were:
-Margaret Wong Best Batsman Award: Andrew Gonzales of Global Challengers for 156 runs in 4 matches.
-El Dorado Best Bowler Award: Neil McGarrell of Global Challengers. His tally from 4 matches was 14 overs, 55 runs for 10 wickets.
-El Dorado Best Fielder and Collabera Wicket-keeper: Akeem Dodson of New York Destroyers for his stunning fielding.
-Reebok Man of the Series: Andrew Gonzales of Global Challengers.

Equipment sponsor Reebok gifted a Reebok bat to Neil McGarrell, Andrew Gonzales and Akeem Dodson for their individual performances and to the winners of the Reebok Cricket Spirit award.

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