AFTER BARELY scraping into the semi-finals, debutants West Indies Emerging Players have advanced to the final of the Colonial Medical Insurance Super50 Cup following a tight three-wicket win (via the Duckworth-Lewis method) over Barbados Pride at the Queen’s Park Oval, St Clair on Thursday.
Sent in to bat, the Pride were skittled out for just 119 with left-arm orthodox bowler, Ashmead Nedd, doing the damage with four for 29 to celebrate his call-up to the West Indies Under-19 squad for the Cricket World Cup in January. The Emerging Players, however, made tough work of the modest total by creeping to 112 for seven in 38.4 overs to progress to the title match against the winners of Friday’s match between TT Red Force and the Leeward Islands Hurricanes.
The Emerging Players struggled on a troublesome Oval pitch in chasing their revised target of 111 in a match reduced to 43 overs due to lighting issues. They opened with the WI U-19 duo of Kimani Melius and Leonardo Julien, only for Julien to depart cheaply for one, stumped by wicket-keeper Tevyn Walcott off Ashley Nurse. Captain Yannic Cariah fell LBW to the same bowler for two with the score on 24. Melius then exited to Joshua Bishop for 18 with Nurse (three for 35) removing Justin Greaves for five to leave the youngsters reeling on 43 for four.
Luckily, Queen’s Park’s Joshua Da Silva (27 with two fours) and Roland Cato (25 not out) would stabilise the innings. Chemar Holder shook things up, though, nabbing Da Silva who edged behind to Walcott. Pacer Miguel Cummins (two for 22) further wobbled the innings by claiming Kevin Sinclair caught and bowled for eight, followed by Dominic Drakes with an easy catch to Nurse for three. However, Cato and Keon Harding’s unbeaten nine would see the Emerging Players through.
When the Pride batted, they shockingly lacked the form which saw them top Zone A in the group stage. They were rattled in the onset with openers Leniko Boucher (five) and Kjorn Ottley (duck) dismissed with the score on seven. Man-of-the-match Nedd bowled Ottley while Boucher edged Harding behind to wicket-keeper Da Silva. Sinclair then had experienced skipper, Jonathan Carter caught behind for five, before scalping Kyle Mayers LBW for a duck. Only four Pride batsmen got into double figures with Zachary McCaskie leading the way via 40 off 61 balls with five fours. When he was run out with the score on 72, the team capitulated from there. Nedd picked up a couple more leg-before decisions through Walcott (duck) and Nurse (25 off 20 balls with one four and two sixes). Nicholas Kirton tried to offer resistance but he lost his stumps to skipper Cariah after a patient 26 off 49. Cariah then scalped Bishop as he lobbed to Drakes for one, setting up Nedd to finish the job by claiming Cummins, caught behind for 11 to give Da Silva his third dismissal. Cariah ended with two for 21 and Sinclair two for 25 to help Nedd set what seemed to be an easy target.