India take the Crossgates Mini World Cup in a thrilling inaugural ‘Tonk-It-10s’ competition
Saturday 25th May 2019 was a landmark day for Crossgates Cricket Club – the day the new Leeds Glass Pavilion was opened by the Lord Mayor of Leeds in the 120th Anniversary of the establishment of the club and the day which also featured a new format and a mini World Cup event, in partnership with the Yorkshire Cricket Foundation.
The day began at 11am when the assorted VIPs, club officials, spectators and players were gathered for the opening of the new Leeds Glass Pavilion. The club was delighted to welcome, as our special guest, the newly invested Lord Mayor of Leeds, Councillor Eileen Taylor and her Consort, Audley (Peter) Taylor.
The club also welcomed the local councillors who have long given their support to the club, Councillors Peter Gruen, Pauline Grahame and especially Cross Gates Councillor Jess Lennox, who has been a tremendous help to the club in terms of sponsorship and helping with arrangements of the event behind the scenes.
After an introduction by Club Secretary Andrew Swallow, the Lord Mayor gave an affectionate speech, reminiscing about her childhood memories of her Father, a passionate cricket fan of Jamaica and the great West Indies sides of the 60s onwards.
Steve Green, the owner of Pavilion sponsors Leeds Glass, was also there to say a few words and reflect on his passion for sport in the community and the efforts of his business in playing as big a role as possible. The Lord Mayor then duly cut the green ribbon and opened the Leeds Glass Pavilion to much applause.
It was also the club’s pleasure to welcome a representative of the Wetherby League, Quentin Cleal, and Steve Archer and Sohail Raz from the Yorkshire Cricket Foundation. The YCF play an important role in the promotion and growth of the game as Crossgates CC is proud to be associated with those activities.
Finally, the Mini World Cup kicked off at 12noon, with a round round event between India, England and a combined Pakistan and World XI. The teams were broadly made up of Crossgates players, the return of some former legendary players who dusted off their bats and some newcomers to the club for the event. Especially welcome were James Houmark and Luke Kenning, who drove down all the way from the North East to turn out for England.
The first match featured India, captained by 1st XI middle order batter Vinnie Patel and the Pakistan and World XI, jointly captained by Crossgates Wesleyans skipper Rayhaan Khan Ahmed and our 2nd XI Sri Lankan pace bowler Zaheer Muzammil. It also featured one of our other overseas representatives, Sean Mac Diarmada of Ireland.
India batted first and started slowly, almost in 50 over mode, but were helped by some wayward Pakistan/World XI bowling as under the Tonk-It-10 rules, a wide ball counts as 6 runs to the opposition. Some lower order biffing got India up to 120 in 10 overs, deemed to be a par score. In response the Pakistan/World XI batted more aggressively and were on course to take the game, only to fall short as Pakistan/World XI struggled against the more disciplined Indian bowling attack.
The next match was England verses the Pakistan/World XI – throwing up an interesting situation – the Pakistan/World XI needing a big win to keep themselves in the competition and then hoping England would beat India to win the competition on most runs scored.
Captained by 1st XI skipper Danny Horry, England got off to a slow start when Horry was bowled by Shabby to much amusement. But England dragged themselves back into the game scoring 122 and again the Pakistan/World XI bowling conceding a number of wides. England bowled with more discipline and stifled the Pakistan/World XI batting line up in another close game which England won by a similar margin to India in the first game.
The Pakistan/World XI, well captained by Rayhaan and Zaheer, were left disappointed, having been in contention in both games yet fading at the final hurdles. However they played both games in a good, competitive spirit and did the competition proud and stayed to watch what was now a final between England and India.
India batted first, and loaded their top order with their biggest hitters who mostly retired having hit 10 or more runs to come back. England bowled well, especially Crossgates junior Jojo Harker, just 13 years old but who conceded just 5 runs in a superbly bowled over. But India got their tactics spot on as the middle order hit out or got out and the return of 1st XI batting powerhouse Arvind flogged the bowling to all parts for a couple of overs as a returning batsman, before holing out. But the damage was done, with India posting a daunting total.
India’s tactics again proved successful as their strong bowling attack was loaded up front and effectively killed the game after the first few overs, England’s batters failing to connect in a high quality contest. India, fielding at least 3 junior players, including the excellent Balraj, kept things tight in the field and choked the English run chase.
So the watch was won, with India victorious, finishing just as rain began to fall. The players and spectators retreated to the Leeds Glass Pavilion and squashed into the newly titled LITEtask Lounge, a nod to another sponsor of the club. Vinnie held aloft the Mini World Cup awarded to him by our Chairman and Coach Gian Singh Virdi, to the great cheers of all.
Thanks to everyone who came to support the day and all the volunteers who made it such a success. Special thanks go to Kate, Katie, Sue, Mohinder and Rick who ran the catering operation which realised the bulk of our income from the day. Also thanks go to former club stalwarts, players Michael Molloy and Carl Shaw for organising the bouncy castle which was very popular with the kids.
Thanks to our sponsors, Steve Green of Leeds Glass, Mark Pears of LITEtask, Councillor Jess Lennox, Ramanjit Siayn of Mayor Signs, Simon Shepherd of flexi-funding and sponsors Roadrunners Taxis and Al Talia Takeaway. Special thanks must also go to Kendal James who was instrumental in the creation of the event as part of the partnership with the Yorkshire Cricket Foundation.
Thanks also must go to the club members who worked so hard to get the Pavilion and the ground ready for the big day. Special mention goes to Gian Singh Virdi and Groundsman Ben Shaw, who worked full time for months to ensure the Pavilion opened on time.
And most of all, thanks to all the kids who showed up. Coach Gian ran a softball game and involved every child who wanted to play. This day, above all, was intended to open our doors to the community around us and attract more girls and boys to play the game. We hope to see you all again soon!
Listen to Event Organiser Paul Harker and Club Secretary Andrew Swallow speak about the club and the event on BBC Radio Leeds