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Super 8 Challenger Cup

Mahua Youth Project is proud to have hosted a new cricket tournament of the likes that east London has never seen before taking place in Victoria park and featuring 15 thrilling matches, 8 strong contenders, 8 a side, 10 overs per innings and finally one winner! 

An impressive 736 runs were scored in four matches of just ten overs on the first day of the tournament.  There were some incredibly close scores and the standard of cricket was exceptionally high, the first match for group 1, India vs Ardent came down to the last over with India pulling out an impressive 18 runs to win the match.  OPG vs East London Community Cricket Club was a match that also had spectators on the edges of their seats with an impressive high score of 61 runs by Jumma Khan, unfortunately this was not enough to win the match.

With the points very even and everything to play for the second weekend of group stages was crucial and very interesting.  La Porte des Indes vs OPG was a shocker of a match with La Porte setting the target at an impressive 168 for two with their captain Vickhyat scoring 89 runs.  OPG was unable to respond to the huge total loosing wickets at regular intervals but managed 64 for four in 10 overs. Ardent vs Wiseman’s Cricket Club was a must win game situation for both of the teams to qualify for the semi finals.  Ardent scored their highest run total in the tournament so far of 140 for two in ten overs, Deckence was Ardent’s star player with a magnificent 77 runs.  Wiseman’s scored a respectable 72 runs in 10 overs but this was not enough against the strong score piled up by Ardent. 

The heat was on in the semi finals, all four qualifying teams eager to get through and taste victory.  On Saturday the 23rd, Island Community Cricket Club, the winners of Group 1 played La Porte Des Indes, the runners up of Group 2.  La Porte batted first and managed to score 69 runs for 3, however, Island managed to get 70 for 3 in 8.2 overs with Shiplu scoring 22 runs early on giving them a comfortable edge.  The afternoon match was between Bangladesh Community Cricket Forum UK, the winners of Group 2 vs Ardent, runners up of Group 1.  This was a painfully close match, Ardent winning the toss and opting to bat first scoring 75 for 3, it was not until the last half of the last over that Bangladesh CCF managed to win the match and qualify for the final game. 

Sunday the 24th was the climax of the tournament, Island and Bangladesh CCF coming head to head.  The teams have both been undefeated in their groups scoring some very impressive runs and wickets, all the spectators were looking forward to what looked to be a very interesting match between two equally strong teams.  Island won the toss and elected to bowel first following the strategy that had previously won their last matches and hoping that the chase for the runs would give them the edge they needed to win.  Bangladesh were strong and consistent and set a challenging yet achievable 95 runs.  Island opened with their star batsman – however, it took them a while to build the pace up and they maybe played a bit over cautiously for a game of 10 overs.  Bangladesh were triumphant and declared the Super 8 Challenger Champions 2008 with a tremendous roar from their supporters.  Bangladesh CCF won with 94 runs for 5, Island not far behind with 91 runs for 3.  Although both teams were evenly matched, Bangladesh CCF certainly had the edge and the strength on the day to push for a high run score and defended it well. 

The final match was swiftly proceeded by interviews with the team captains followed by a colourful closing ceremony amongst distinguished guests which comprised of veteran cricketers, sporting personalities, sponsors and well wishers.  The runners up award was handed by the sponsor himself Mr Sadeq CEO of Direct Accident Claims to Mo, the skipper of Island CCC and the trophy and handsome first prize of £1000 were proudly awarded by Mr Dasgupta on behalf of Mahua Youth Project to Bangladesh CCF’s skipper Salman.  The man of the series was awarded by Mr Helal of Hillside Travels to Shumon Sharif from Bangladesh CCF who scored over 150 runs in four matches and took over five wickets.  He was definitely the most consistent and strong all rounder for Bangladesh CCF being an asset to their team.  The man of the match prizes were awarded by our special guests.

Overseen by professional umpires, the tournament has adopted the rules of international Twenty20 cricket with minor modifications. The teams have been playing to win not only the title of Super 8 Challenger Champions 2008 but also a first prize of £1000, with the runners up receiving £500. There will also be prizes for Man of the Match and Man of the Series awarded.

Mahua Youth Project would like to give a special thanks to all of the teams that have participated in The Super 8 Challenger Cup 2008 and the wonderful support of the umpires.  We have been incredibly lucky to have had a tournament of such good natured people which has set a marvellous tone and good sporting atmosphere to the Super Challenger Cup which we hope will carry through to The Super Challenger Cup 2009.

Mahua Youth Project would like to thank their sponsors Fexinco, Zee TV, Vee Kay Sports, Pret a Manger, Atomic Energy Drink, Woodworm, All Sport Medical, Direct Accident Claims, Gray Nicolls, Rubicon, Hillside Travels and ATN Bangla for their generosity in helping to make this tournament a success.

We would also like to thank the following companies for providing the Man of the Match awards: Banglar Mukh, Gram Bangla, Sonargaon Group, Shalimar Halal Restaurant, Spice Trader, Chutneys, Bangla City and Café Naz.

A special thanks must also be given to the support and advice of Bert Vandermark, Rita Vandermark, Colin Micheal, Ben Sanyal and David Marsh.
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