GUYANA Jaguars closed day two of their final round Cricket West Indies (CWI) Regional Four-day encounter against Trinidad and Tobago Red Force at Providence last evening on 69-2, chasing 162 for an outright win.
The Jaguars, four-time defending champions, will start today, the penultimate day, needing another 93 runs with opener Tagenarine Chanderpaul on 22 and captain Leon Johnson on 37 with eight boundaries.
When the hosts’ chase began, they lost Chandrapaul Hemraj and Vishaul Singh, but any further hope the visitors had of making the Jaguars further uncomfortable was dashed by the two left-handers.
However, prior to the run chase, a late order fightback had given the visitors a reasonable total to defend but, generally, their most accomplished batsmen failed for a second time in two days as they were eventually bowled out for 206.
Number nine batsman Daniel St Clair top-scored with an unbeaten 31 while Khary Pierre (30), Jason Mohammed (27), Joshua Da Silva (25), Denesh Ramdin (23), Odean Smith (21) and Anderson Phillips (21), contributed to a total aided by some poor fielding from Jaguars, who dropped five catches.
Following his 5-24 performance in the first innings, pacer Romario Shepherd took 3-52, and was the main destructive force again in the Red Force’s second innings.
Left-arm seamer Raymon Reifer and left-arm spinner Veerasammy Permaul had figures of 2-43 and 2-49 while medium pacers Sherfane Rutherford and Christopher Barnwell chipped in with a wicket each.
Resuming the day with a 28-run deficit, overnight batsman Da Silva was joined by captain Ramdin, and the right-handed pair frustrated the home side for almost an hour into the day’s play.
The hosts might have expected to make short work of the opposition right from the start but the pair, especially Ramdin, the former West Indies captain, dug in and mixed gritty defence with powerful drives on both sides of the wicket.
However, a double bowling change resulted in the duo’s dismissal. Ramdin was the first to go, bowled by Reifer from a ball that nipped back in slightly for a brisk 23 while Da Silva was trapped leg-before to Permaul for a fighting 25, to ease some of Jaguars’ tension, at 71-4.
At that point Mohammed was accompanied by Pierre but it soon became 97-5 when the right-handed Mohammed, after facing 82 balls, played a loose drive off Barnwell and was taken at second slip by Singh.
A mix-up between Imran Khan and Pierre saw Khan run-out for four, but Smith and Pierre then added 32 for the seventh-wicket, a partnership which saw Smith hoist Permaul for three sixes, and Pierre dropped by Leon Johnson at first slip off Shepherd.
However, both batsmen went in quick succession with Smith top-edging a short ball from Shepherd and Rutherford completing the catch on the fine-leg boundary. Pierre was taken at the wicket off Reifer. Bryan Charles went cheaply, leg-before to Shepherd but the last-wicket stand of 34 runs between St Clair and Anderson saw another frustrating period for Jaguars until Permaul removed Anderson.
The visitors’ opening bowlers then bowled in the right areas to trouble Jaguars’ top order. Hemraj went without scoring, bowled off an inside edge by Phillips before St Clair orchestrated the demise of Vishaul Singh, caught off a leading edge for five.
Play resumes at 14:00hrs today.
T&T RED FORCE 2nd innings (o/n 17-2)
J. Solozano c Bramble b Shepherd 0
J. Da Silva lbw b Permaul 25
T. Webster lbw b Rutherford 7
D. Ramdin b Reifer 23
J. Mohammed c Singh b Barnwell 27
K. Pierre c Bramble b Reifer 30
I. Khan run-out (Chanderpaul) 4
O. Smith c Rutherford b Shepherd 21
D. St Clair not out 31
B. Charles lbw b Shepherd 8
A. Phillips lbw b Permaul 21
Extras: (b-5, lb-1, nb-3) 9
Total: (all out, 75.2 overs) 206
Fall of wickets: 1-0, 2-17, 3-43, 4-71, 5-97, 6-108, 7-140, 8-156, 9-172.
Bowling: Shepherd 17-1-52-3, Reifer 16-5-43-2, Rutherford 8-1-20-1, Barnwell 13-3-19-1, Permaul 14.2-2-49-2, Lewis 7-2-17-0.
GUYANA JAGUARS 2nd innings
T. Chanderpaul not out 22
C. Hemraj b Anderson 0
V. Singh c Pierre b St Clair 5
L. Johnson not out 37
Extras: (b-1, lb-1, nb-3) 5
Total: (for two wickets, 20 overs) 69
Fall of wickets: 1-3, 2-12.
Bowling: Phillips 6-1-15-1, St Clair 5-1-21-1, Smith 4-1-13-0, Charles 4-2-13-0, Khan 1-0-5-0.