Lugg, Harty shine during gloomy Scorpions practice match
Opener Leroy Lugg and spinners Patrick Harty and Jamie Merchant all showed good form following the rain-curtailed Jamaica Scorpions’ four-day practice match which ended at Chedwin Park on Sunday.
The burly right-hander Lugg hit an impressive 159 for the Aldane Thomas-led XI which posted 299 all out against Merchant’s XI who reached 152 for three before heavy showers forced the abandonment of the final day because of a wet pitch.
Lugg faced 134 balls and hit 12 fours and a whopping 16 sixes as he used his feet well and capitalised on his hitting zone. Fellow opener Romaine Morris was also in good form hitting 76 from 194 balls with nine fours and a six.
The pair put on an impressive 245 runs for the first wicket before Lugg was the first to go, caught by Merchant off left-arm seamer Khari Campbell.
Harty utilised the late afternoon conditions to good effect to start the slide for Thomas’ XI by snaring five wickets for 74 runs from 22.2 overs, while Merchant picked up four wickets for 79 runs from 18 overs.
In reply, left-hander Alywn Williams stroked an unbeaten 53 from 91 balls with seven fours to lead Merchant’s team to 152 for three before rain stopped play.
The match was the first four-day practice game for the Scorpions squad, who are currently preparing for the 2023 West Indies Championship which bowls off the first week of February.
Head coach Andrew Richardson says the players have been reintegrating themselves back into red-ball cricket, having recently come off a winning campaign during the Super 50 Cup limited-overs tournament.
“During the Super 50 Cup, we had players here in Jamaica working on their overall conditioning from October. When we came back, we immediately started to have longer training sessions and more red ball games with a couple of two-day games and a three-day game, and now we are fully into our four-day preparation.”
Richardson added that a number of players have begun to show some early season form from the practice games with pacer Gordon Bryan picking up a five-wicket haul along and Jeavor Royal getting a century.
The former Windward Islands coach said a number of the new players are also knocking on the door with all-rounder Shalom Parnell getting a half-century and picking up some wickets along with new pacer Ojay Shields, who has been cranking up the deliveries during the sessions.
“It is good to see some of the younger players putting up their hands by showing that they have the potential and capabilities to perform at the first-class level,” Richardson said.