DEFENDING title-holders Central Zone stormed into the semi-finals of the 2020 Scotiabank Next Gen Under-15 Inter Zone Cricket Tournament after sweeping their three preliminary round group matches in impressive style.
The Central boys beat South by four wickets to top Group “B” with a maximum of 12 points for an unbeaten record, and will play North Zone, runners-up in Group “A”, on Wednesday for a spot in the championship match.
This enticing 50-overs knockout encounter will be staged at the Brian Lara Stadium at Tarouba from 9.30 am.
In the other semi-final clash. Group “B” winners East Zone, also unbeaten so far in the tournament, will play Group “A” runners-up South East at the National Cricket Centre in Balmain, Couva, also on Wednesday.
In last week’s final group matches, East booked their place in the final four when spinner Yasir Deen took four wickets for 22 runs and together with Samir Saroop (two for seven) restricted North East to 101 in 41.1 overs.
Batting first, East had posted a challenging total of 232 for eight wickets with big contributions from Stephan McPherson who made 73 while Samir showed his batting ability with an unbeaten 49.
North Zone humbled Tobago by 56 runs after racking up 208 in 40 overs as Aditya Ramdeen slammed 55 and Darion Ramdeen tallied 34. The Tobago bowling was spearheaded by Jaylon Kent who took three wickets for 27 runs.
Kent came back with the bat to top score with 33 and was assisted by Keil Ross (28) and Kyle James (26) and a whopping 40 extras conceded by North.
But Arshad Harrilal grabbed five wickets for 27 runs and Aditya Ramdeen took two for 19 to snuff out any hopes Tobago entertained of an unlikely victory.
South East crushed South West by 166 runs after making 219 in 42.5 overs and then routed their opponents for a paltry 53 in 17.2 overs when Aadian Racha spun a web to trap seven wickets for 12 runs in six overs for the “Man-of-the-Match” award.
Sadiq Felix also returned figures of three for 61 in his ten overs and Ethan Lalla collected two for 11.
For South East, Asleem Mohammed made 42, Oshan Gobin hit 38, and Brendon Boodoo chipped in with 35, and also took two wickets for ten runs.
Central Zone took just ten overs to reduce South to 62 all out as Thomas Walsh snared two for four in seven overs, while Alexander Chase and Luke Ali both claimed two for 16 each.
In their run chase, Central reached 64 for six wickets with Kerran Ramdass making 17 as Kovid Bispath took three for 13 to give South a glimmer of hope.
The Scotiabank Next Gen Under-15 Inter Zone final will be played on Wednesday, February 19 at the National Cricket Centre.
THIRD ROUND RESULTS –
AT SANCHO/ST JULIEN GROUND: South East 219 (42.5 overs) - Asleem Mohammed 42, Ashan Gobin 38, Brendon Boodoo 35; Sadiq Felix 3/61, Ethan Lalla 2/11 vs South West 53 (17.2 overs) - Aaidan Racha 7/12, Brendon Boodoo 2/10. South East won by 166 runs.
AT FATIMA COLLEGE GROUND: North 208 (40 overs) - Aditya Ramdeen 55, Darion Gooding 34; Jayden Kent 3/27 vs Tobago 152 (37.2 overs) - Jayden Kent 33, Keil Ross 28, Kyle James 26; Arshad Harrilal 5/25, Aditya Ramdeen 2/18. North won by 56 runs.
AT BAMBOO RECREATION GROUND: East 232-8 (50 overs) - Stephen McPherson 73, Samir Saroop 49 not out, Abdul Raheem Toppin 26; Shiva Singh 3/33, Ishmael Ali 2/29, Vashist Maharaj 2/50 vs North East 101 (41.1 overs) - Ishmael Ali 14, Zakilon Beckles 12, Avinash Singh 11; Yasir Deen 4/22, Samir Saroop 2/7. East won by 131 runs.
AT AVIDESH SAMAROO PARK: South 62 (10 overs) - Kovid Bispath 10; Thomas Walsh 2/4, Alexander Chase 2/16, Luke Ali 2/16 vs Central 64-6 (19.2 overs) - Kerran Ramdass 17; K Bispath 3/13. Central bt South by four wkts.
Group “A”: East Zone 12 pts; North Zone 8 pts; North East Zone 4 pts; Tobago Zone 0 pt.
Group “B”: Central Zone 12 pts; South East Zone 8 pts; South Zone 4 pts; South West Zone 0 pt.