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Redbridge are the pride of London cricket after Youth Games win

Redbridge LYG cricket winners Redbridge LYG cricket winners

Friday, March 7, 2014
5:00 PM

Team manager Mahesh Velani believes the future is bright for cricket in the borough after seeing Redbridge crowned London Youth Games cricket champions at Lord’s on Sunday.

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The youngsters won the event for the second time in three years at the home of cricket after seeing off Southwark in the final, and all bar one of the team are set to play in next year’s competition.

And Velani believes that shows the amount of talent the borough’s youngsters have to offer the game.

“It was great to win it for the second time in three years,” said Velani. “It was a young side this year and the good thing is most of this squad will return next year as well to hopefully retain the title.

“That shows the talent that we have in the borough and a lot of the boys will relish the challenge.”

Their closest match all day proved to be their quarter-final clash with last year’s runners-up Wandsworth, where they secured victory with four balls to spare.

A good semi-final win followed against Haringey, where they set the opposition 103 for victory, which included a massive 37 off the final over, before skittling them for 44 in reply.

“The quarter-final went down to the wire and the boys all delivered in the pressure moments and that bodes well for their development,” added Velani.

“The more pressure moments you have as a youngster will stand them in good stead for the future.

“Scoring 37 in that final over against Haringey was the big turning point to take into the field where we performed well again.”

And they saved the best for last as Velani described the final match as their “most complete performance” of the day.

“Any indoor cricket is a pressure moment and the final is that from the start,” he said.

“But that was the most complete performance of the day and it was nice to deliver it in the final.”

They wouldn’t have reached the finals though without a lot of hard work and effort put in during the weeks leading up to the final and Velani praised the youngsters’ attitude in taking on board all what was asked of them.

“In total a lot of them are practising three or four times a week in various forms and they certainly put in a lot of effort,” he remarked.

“We tried to get across what the lads needed to do in training and though it took a little while to get going, the boys were great.”

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