Scorpion bowlers put the squeeze on Hurricanes
THE JAMAICA Scorpions put in a disciplined effort with the ball to restrict the Leeward Islands Hurricanes to 163 for six on the first day of the opening round of matches in the 2023 West Indies Championship at the Coolidge Cricket Ground in Antigua.
The Paul Palmer-led side will be on the hunt early for the remaining wickets on today’s second day, with the dangerous Rahkeem Cornwall their main target, as he is unbeaten on 29 from 71 balls with four fours.
Also at the crease is Jeremiah Louis, who is not out on 17 from 84 balls, as the pair has, so far, added an unbroken 46 runs for the seventh wicket.
Debutant leg-spinner Abhijai Mansingh has so far picked up two crucial wickets, that of captain Jahmar Hamilton for a top score of 40, as well as middle-order batter Terrance Warde, who was bowled for 10.
Mansingh, who was not named in the original playing 11, has replaced Alwyn Williams, who was ruled out of the contest for medical reasons, according to a Cricket West Indies statement. The change was approved by the match officials and the captains in accordance with the ICC rules, which govern first-class matches.
It was the seamers, who got the ball rolling for the Scorpions after they were sent into the field. Marquino Mindley struck first, having opener Kieran Powell caught and bowled for nine with just 11 runs on the board.
Eight runs later, pacer Gordon Bryan had Kacey Carty caught behind for two before off-spinner Jamie Merchant had Kofi James caught at deep mid-wicket for 15 at 40 for three.
Hamilton and opener Montcin Hodge added 59 runs for the fourth wicket before off-spinner Akim Fraser had Hodge snapped up by wicket-keeper Aldane Thomas for 37.
Following Mansingh’s double strike, which cost 27 runs in 14 overs, Cornwall and Louis batted out the remainder of the day.
Scorpions coach Andrew Richardson praised the efforts of his bowlers on what he describes as a decent wicket.
“Our bowlers did a very good job by keeping it tight and it would have been an even more brilliant day if we had gotten two more wickets. Day two will be critical, especially the first hour.”
Meanwhile, over at Northsound, the Guyana Harpy Eagles closed the opening day against the Barbados Pride on 205 for five with opener Matthew Nandu leading the charge with an unbeaten 70 from 219 deliveries. The lefthander has hit nine fours so far. Kevin Sinclair is not out on 28 against two wickets each for Akeem Jordon and Chaim Holder.
Over in Grenada, the Windward Islands Volcanoes trail Trinidad and Tobago by 12 runs following their second-innings score of 60 without loss after they first posted 243. Kimani Melius is not out on 38 and Jerlani Robinson, 19. Earlier, Tyvn Walcott made an unbeaten 87 and Sunil Ambris 55 in the Volcano’s first innings.
Terrance Hinds and Bryan Charles picked up four wickets each for T&T, who made 315 in their turn at the crease. Amir Jangoo top -scored, with 86 with Tion Webster getting 79 and Hinds 52.
Ryan John picked up five wickets for 18 runs, with Darius Martin grabbing two wickets for 40 runs for the Windwards.