Atlanta is a cricket crazy city! The testimonial to that is the 7th Annual Pyramid Consulting Super 16 cricket Cup, which was organized on June 14th, a month after the FurtureTech Vibha Cricket Cup in which 46 teams participated.
This year the tournament shifted to a new venue - The Webb Bridge baseball grounds in Alpharetta which is the practice ground to many of the teams participating and it was like playing in home conditions. The clay grounds require you to have a disciplined bowling attack if you need to win the tournament. The winners this year were Alpharetta Monsters - Kings. Congratulations to them.
The storyline in the FutureTech Vibha Cricket Cup was the Monsters getting soundly defeated in the first round. Therefore, they were determined to win this tournament and redeemed themselves with resounding victories in all the 5 matches. There was no team that could match their skills in any of their games. The Alpharetta Monsters are probably the best hard tennis ball cricket team in Atlanta.
In the quarterfinals, there was a thrilling last ball finish between Chattanooga Titans and RapidIT Royals. Three runs were needed of the last ball and the batsman deftly placed the ball behind the square and scampered two runs to get a tie. However, the rules state that the team with better run rate at then end of 5 overs wins the game and hence RapidIT were declared winners. I guess, it is time to introduce the Super Over for tied contests.
Lanka lions who were the winners a month ago had to face off against Alpharetta Monsters and restricted them to a measly 49 runs in 10 overs. During the chase, Prasad, Deepak and other bowlers of Monsters elevated their game and had the Lanka Lions pinned at 13 for 5 and eventually bowled them out for 30 odd runs to march to the semifinals.
The other semifinalists ACC and GPC Stallions had easy victories against Marietta Mayhem and FurtureTech respectively
In a low scoring game RapidIT Royals were defending their total of 45 runs against GPC Stallions, until Hiren the captain of Stallions entered the game and scored 10 runs in the seventh over, which effectively sealed the contest for them. It was a great victory for Stallions because it was the first time they entered the finals of any Vibha cricket tournament.
The second semifinal was supposed to be a challenging match between the Monsters and ACC but the bowling unit of Monsters once again made it an easy contest after a total of 61 was posted on the board in the first innings. Shirish was the best bowler of the match with 3 wickets in 3 overs with useful contributions from Prasad and Deepak. ACC was never in the hunt because they lost wickets at regular intervals and only managed to post 43 runs in their chase.
Once again batting first the Monsters were pegged by the Stallions in the early overs with 4 wickets. Bali, the captain, and Deepak, the allrounder, controlled the innings very well and helped post a large total of 70 runs especially on the clay surface. Having watched the Monsters rout their opponents, the Stallions were very well aware of the bowling challenge they faces. It was important to get off to a good start but the chase was effectively over in the third over when the stallions were 5 wickets down, with Deepak and Prasad claiming all the scalps. Only a rearguard action from Rushit, which was more fun to watch than anything else, allowed them to bat their full quota of 10 overs and post a total of 38 runs.
Deepak won the Man of the Man (Finals) for his all-round displays in the match and also won the best bowler of the tournament award. The Best Batsmen award went to Pankaj of Alpharetta Monsters because he scored the only 50 of the tournament in Round Robin stage. The man of the Tournament (Best All-rounder) award, of course went to Bali, the captain of Alpharetta Monsters for leading his team to victory once again. Ramesh Materu of Pyramind Consulting and Ram Gangaraju of Sanket Systems distributed the prizes.
Vibha would like to thank its volunteers, supporters and of course the sponsors for making this tournament a success. Look out for the tournament next year and visit us at atlanta.vibha.org for more information.
Pyramid Consulting Super16 (July 2009)