The fifth annual BAPS Twenty20 cricket tournament was held at Hainault Recreation Ground in East London on Saturday 4 August 2012. The event welcomed 20 teams with participants from across the UK between the ages of 18 to over 50, with the key objective to encourage all ages to integrate and play as a united team.
With seven pitches available at the excellent location of Hainault Recreation Ground, the traditional knockout tournament was adjusted to accommodate all participants. The top team in each group qualified for the main BAPS Twenty20 Trophy with the runners-up qualifying for the BAPS Twenty20 Plate.
With both of last year’s finalists losing one of their group games, all the other teams were filled with renewed belief that they too could lift the coveted trophy this year.
Following the group stages, the tournament switched to the knockout format, starting with the quarter-finals. Both the semi-finals in the BAPS Trophy were intriguing contests. East London A, after overcoming the two-time winners APC Lions in the quarter-finals, defeated one of the surprise teams of the competition in Birmingham. In the other semi–final, South London A, determined to go one better than last year, defeated Leicester having overcome a resistant Finchley side in the quarter-finals. In the BAPS Plate semi-finals, Preston beat South-East London while Brent & Harrow B were defeated by South London B.
This year’s finalists for the BAPS T20 Trophy were East London A and South London A – two teams who are always there or thereabouts in the tournament every year and with some of the best talent the tournament has to offer.
With a modest total to chase, South London A were in the driving seat to win the one trophy which has so far eluded them. However, in a day where upsets and shocks were ripe, one more twist was left in the tale. East London A, through some inspired and disciplined fielding and bowling, successfully defended the total to take the title for 2012 in the very last over. This denied South London the double of lifting both pieces of silverware, as South London B eventually came through victors in the BAPS Plate Trophy final. It was a fitting end to one of the most intriguing and exhilarating days of high class cricket.
All the games were played in great sporting spirit where individual performances were also rewarded, as follows:
Best Batsman: Mayank Patel – South London A (148 runs)
Best Bowlers: Pratik Patel – East London A (8 wickets)
Best Batsman: Darpan Patel – South London B (125 runs)
Best Bowler: Akshay Maisuri – East London B (4 wickets)