ST. JOHN’S, Antigua – Hundreds from former Trinidad & Tobago Red Force captain Jason Mohammed and current captain Yannick Ottley headlined a slew of memorable landmark performances in the West Indies Championship on Friday.
Mohammed gathered his 10th first-class hundred of 119 and Ottley collected his maiden hundred of 116 to put the visitors into a superior position against hosts Windward Islands Volcanoes on the second day of their rain-marred match in the fourth round of the Championship.
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Left-arm spinner Camarie Boyce had a memorable Championship debut, giving Barbados Pride the upper hand over hosts Leeward Islands Hurricanes when their match began a day later than originally scheduled.
And, Veerasammy Permaul twice proved a thorn in the side of the Jamaica Scorpions, after their spinners Patrick Harty Jr and Jamie Merchant got them back into contention against hosts and current leaders Guyana Jaguars on the second day of their match.
Scorpions (187) & 50-3 vs Jaguars (190) at the Guyana National Stadium in Providence, Guyana
Permaul, playing his 98th match in the Championship, followed up a tidy knock of 35 that helped the Jags claim a slender lead, with a pair of late wickets.
The two scalps carried him past 450 in his career in the Championship and put the Scorpions under intense pressure going into the third day on Saturday.
Off-spinner Kevin Sinclair made the breakthrough for the hosts, after West Indies opener John Campbell gave the visitors’ second innings a typically rousing start.
Campbell put on 49 with fellow left-handed opener Assad Fudadin, a decorated, former Jaguars batsman, who was not out on 13 at stumps.
Sinclair had Campbell, the Scorpions captain, adjudged lbw for 31 before Permaul struck in successive overs to send the visitors into disarray.
Permaul had night-watchman Nicholson Gordon lbw for one in his fourth over to reach the 450 mark and followed up in his next over, the final of the day, with the scalp of Test batsman Jermaine Blackwood caught in the covers for a duck to go to bed with figures of 2-9 from five overs.
Harty had earlier taken a career-best 3-30 from 14 overs and Merchant 3-38 from 16 overs to undermine the Jaguars’ batting, after the home team resumed from their overnight total of 17 without loss.
A handful of the Jags batsmen got starts without carrying on and the Scorpions, whose penchant for escapes this season has been well-documented, limited their hosts to a lead of three runs.
Chandrapaul Hemraj hit the top score of 38 for the Jaguars, Permaul added his bit, Christopher Barnwell supported with 34, Barbadian all-rounder Raymon Reifer was not out on 33 and Vishaul Singh got 22.
Outside of two stands of 59 for the fourth wicket between Barnwell and Singh, and 65 for the eighth wicket between Permaul and Reifer, there was little stability to the Jags batting.
They slipped to 54 for three inside the first hour before Barnwell and Singh batted either side of lunch to lead a recovery, and they were again wobbling on 119 for seven before Permaul and Reifer put them within reach of the lead.
Hurricances (181) vs Pride (108-2) at Warner Park in Basseterre, St. Kitts
Pride make a like-for-like change to their line-up, when Boyce, 20, replaced injured West Indies left-arm spinner Jomel Warrican, and he announced himself onto the first-class stage, taking 5-65 from 16 overs to lead the destruction of the Hurricanes batting.
Pacer Kevin Stoute supported with 3-18 from six overs and off-spinner Ashley Nurse bagged 2-46 from 18 overs to justify the Pride’s decision to field after winning the toss.
Test batsman Kieran Powell, playing his 55th Championship match, was the top scorer for the Hurricanes with 76 and passed 3,000 runs in the Championship. He now has 3,012.
Off-spinner Rahkeem Cornwall then bowled West Indies teammate Kraigg Brathwaite for six to claim his 200th wicket in the Championship, becoming the seventh Hurricanes bowler to reach the landmark.
Cornwall added the scalp of left-handed opener Shayne Moseley lbw for 20 and Pride were 42 for two.
But Jonathan Carter, not out on 26, and West Indies batsman Shamarh Brooks, not out on 42, survived the final 1-1/4 hours to put on 66 – unbroken – for the third wicket.
Red Force (373-9 dec) vs Volcanoes 71-2 at Windsor Park in Roseau, Dominica
Mohammed and Ottley shared 224 for the third wicket to dominate the Volcanoes attack. It is the highest partnership for a Trinidad & Tobago side in the modern West Indies first-class championship (1966 onwards).
It eclipsed a stand of 188 between Suruj Ragoonath and acclaimed, fellow former West Indies batsman Brian Lara against Barbados 24 years ago at Guaracara Park in the southern Trinidad community of Pointe-A-Pierre.
All 10 of Mohammed’s hundreds have been for Red Force in the Championship and Ottley can now put to bed the memory of his previous career best of 99 not out against the same opponents almost four years and one month to the day at the Beausejour Cricket Ground (now the Daren Sammy Cricket Ground).
After hometown off-spinner Shane Shillingford brought the grind to an end when he removed Mohammed, there was token resistance from the rest of the batting, and Red Force lost seven wickets for 84 before they declared.
Shillingford was the most successful Volcanoes bowler with 3-63 from 22 overs, taking his career aggregate to 485, which puts him 15 away of becoming the second bowler behind retired Scorpions left-arm spinner Nikita Miller to take 500 in the Championship.
Spinners Bryan Charles and Akeal Hosein then tightened the Red Force’s grip taking the wickets of opener Desron Maloney for seven and Volcanoes captain Kavem Hodge for 18 respectively, in a little more than two hours of play before the close.
At stumps, Devon Smith was not out on 35 and fellow Grenadian Andre Fletcher, returning to the Championship for the first time in almost three years, was not out on two.
January 9 to 12
Hurricanes lost to Jaguars by 10 wickets – Vivian Richards Cricket Ground, Antigua Scorecard
Red Force drew with Scorpions – Brian Lara Cricket Academy, Trinidad Scorecard
Volcanoes beat Pride by three wickets – Arnos Vale Cricket Ground, St. Vincent Scorecard
January 16 to 19
Scorpions drew with Volcanoes – Sabina Park, Jamaica Scorecard
Pride beat Jaguars by 7 wickets – Kensington Oval, Barbados Scorecard
Red Force beat Hurricanes by an innings and 168 runs – Brian Lara Cricket Academy Scorecard
January 23 to 26
Scorpions lost to Pride by 119 runs – Sabina Park Scorecard
Jaguars beat Red Force by 219 runs – Guyana National Stadium, Guyana Scorecard
Volcanoes lost to Hurricanes by – Daren Sammy Cricket Ground, St. Lucia Scorecard
(All matches start at 10 am daily, except where indicated in brackets)
February 6 to 9
Jaguars vs Scorpions – Guyana National Stadium (9:30 a.m. daily)
Volcanoes vs Red Force – Windsor Park, Dominica
February 7 to 10
Hurricanes vs Pride – Warner Park, St. Kitts
February 13 to 16
Scorpions vs Hurricanes – Trelawny Multipurpose Complex, Jamaica
Pride vs Red Force – Kensington Oval
Volcanoes vs Jaguars – Grenada National Stadium, Grenada
February 27 to March 1
Scorpions vs Jaguars – Trelawny Multipurpose Complex, Jamaica
Pride vs Volcanoes – Kensington Oval
Hurricanes vs Red Force – Warner Park
March 5 to 8
Red Force vs Pride – Brian Lara Cricket Academy
Volcanoes vs Scorpions – Grenada National Stadium
Jaguars vs Hurricanes – Guyana National Stadium (9:30 a.m. daily)
March 12 to 15
Red Force vs Volcanoes – Brian Lara Cricket Academy (2 p.m. daily)
Hurricanes vs Scorpions – Vivian Richards Cricket Ground
Jaguars vs Pride – Guyana National Stadium (2 p.m. daily)
March 26 to 29
Pride vs Scorpions – Kensington Oval (2 p.m. daily)
Hurricanes vs Volcanoes – Vivian Richards Cricket Ground
Red Force vs Jaguars – Queen’s Park Oval, Trinidad
April 2 to 5
Jaguars vs Volcanoes – Guyana National Stadium (9:30 a.m. daily)
Scorpions vs Red Force – Sabina Park (2 p.m. daily)
Pride vs Hurricanes – Kensington Oval