The Guyana Jaguars clinched the WICB Professional Cricket League four-day title despite being held to a draw by the Trinidad and Tobago Red Force in their penultimate round match at Providence Stadium in Guyana, yesterday.
The Jaguars entered the penultimate round with a 23-point lead over second placed, now dethroned champions Barbados Pride, and earned seven from their draw against the Red Force to reach 130 points with one match to play.
The Pride, who started the round with 100 points, earned eight after their match against the Windward Islands Volcanoes also ended in a draw at Kensington Oval in Barbados yesterday.
The Pride are now on 108 points and even with one match to play, they have no hope of catching the leaders. A maximum of 20 points are on offer per match meaning the Bajans, can only reach a maximum 128 points if they get full points in the final round match against Jamaica starting Friday.
At Providence yesterday, veteran West Indies left-hander Shiv Chanderpaul inched closer to yet another landmark in his illustrious career as leaders Jaguars and the Red Force played to a tame draw.
Set 218 to win, Red Force finished the day on 99 for three when both captains decided to call it quits at 4:30 p.m. with the contest going nowhere at the National Stadium. Opener Imran Khan top scored with 40 off 60 balls with seven fours while captain Rayad Emrit entertained himself with three fours and a six in an unbeaten 24 off 42 deliveries.
, and Jeremy Solozano who hit 21, put on 49 for the first wicket but the total was always outside of Red Force’s reach. Earlier, Chanderpaul stroked an unbeaten 69 and Vishaul Singh, an unbeaten 41, to help push the home side up to 266 for five declared.
hit seven fours off 144 balls in just over 3-1/2 hours while Vishaul faced 86 balls in 107 minutes and counted four fours. The pair put on 83 in an unbroken sixth wicket stand, after Guyana resumed the day on 120 for three.
-hander Narsingh Deonarine converted his overnight six not out into 41 off 86 balls with five fours.
the half-century, Chanderpaul moved to within sight of 25 000 first class runs, with just 38 required to reach the landmark. Meanwhile, off-spinner Jason Mohammed (2-38) and Imran Khan (2-67) finished with two wickets apiece for Jaguars.