By Dean Greenaway
Unbeaten Vikings have positioned themselves for a chance to join the league’s elite with one more victory on Sunday, after years of futility, sitting and watching others celebrating and lifting the BVI Cricket Association Digicel Twenty 20 League Tournament crown.
At 2 p.m. on Sunday, Vikings will face four time champs Cavaliers—whom they beat for the first time in six years –at the Greenland Recreation Grounds. They advanced to the final after classically disposing defending champs Vincy by seven wickets and 20 balls to spare in their last match of the Super Six stage.
“We have worked hard. We come out on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays, we put in the efforts and the results showed in how we played this year,” Vikings Captain Richard Fredericks said. “Winning the title would be our very first time and special for everybody and we’ll cherish the moment. Since it would be our first, the first is always the best.”
Fredericks said the strength of the team lies in its batting and bowling. “Everything is there—we just have to improve in our fielding,” he noted. “We have to improve on that.”
BVI Cricket Association president Shan Mohamed said Vikings have restructured their team, attracted other quality players to the line up and they have played hard from the start. “Their success is no surprise to me,” he said. “I’m very pleased with the outcome.”
Mohamed said he find it interesting that Cavaliers have made it to the final, pointing out that they haven’t played particularly good cricket this season. “But, that’s the game of cricket,” he noted. “You never know what tomorrow will bring. But, we are expecting a good final and a good turnout.”
Mohamed said this year’s tournament was more successful than last year and they attracted more than 300 persons per game. He said the penultimate weekend before the close of the Super Six Series showed what the sport means to the territory.
“Rains fell for all of Friday and Saturday and a little bit of Sunday, and we had about 350 persons out to the match,” he recalled. “I think this year has been very successful. The standard of cricket has improved and teams are much stronger this year. We divided the teams into two zones where the weaker teams played a qualifying round to move up to Division I. So, we are happy with the support from the general public and the players on a whole.”
The championship match will be preceded by an all star game and followed by the awards, prize giving and closing ceremonies.