Malta Supreme Guyana ready to take on Barbados today
DESPITE suffering a 10-run loss to Jamaica in their final preliminary round match of this year’s West Indies Cricket Board NAGICO Super50 tournament last Saturday, Malta Supreme Guyana are brimming with confidence when they face Barbados in their semifinal encounter at the Queen’s Park Oval this afternoon.The Christopher Barnwell-led team had an arduous net session at the venue yesterday, while Trinidad and Tobago were facing the Jamaicans in the first semifinal, and despite a few players being stricken by the flu bug, there is still that air of confidence.
Prior to today’s meeting, the two sides met on 33 occasions, with Guyana coming out on top 16 times, while two were abandoned and one washed out, with Barbados taking the other 14 matches, their last victory coming in last year’s Regional Super50 tournament, when they defeated Guyana by five wickets at the Kensington Oval.
The Guyanese, who last won a Regional Super50 tournament nine years ago, when Shivnarine Chanderpaul led them to the WICB KFC Cup with a victory over Barbados in the final, placed second in their group matches to Jamaica, entering today’s contest with a net run rate of +0.840 in comparison to Barbados’ +1.051, which saw them top their group over the host nation.
A look at today’s Malta Supreme Guyana lineup shows the tournament’s leading run-scorer to date Ramnaresh Sarwan with 151 runs from 2 matches and Chanderpaul who is third on the list seven runs behind Sarwan,
Chanderpaul will start the batting attack alongside a temperamental Trevon Griffith, followed by Sarwan at three, with Leon Johnson, Narsingh Deonarine, who is yet to come to the fore with the bat in this tournament,t and Barnwell following.
They will be supported by Assad Fudadin, Royston Crandon, Anthony Bramble, Devendra Bishoo, Veerasammy Permaul, Paul Wintz and Ronsford Beaton, who have all made meaningful contributions to the team so far.
To date, both Beaton and Wintz have put in yeoman service with both new balls for Malta Supreme Guyana, with Beaton claiming seven victims and Wintz four, while Barnwell and Fudadin have offered valuable support with their steady medium pace. The spinners, led by Permaul and Bishoo, with good support from Deonarine and Crandon, have also contributed to the team’s achievements.
Jonathan Carter had the distinct privilege of scoring the first ton of the tournament, 109 against Trinidad and Tobago in the first round and even though he scored three more runs after the ton, he still leads his team’s batting with an aggregate of 112 runs at an average of 56.00.
Dwayne Smith, their pugnacious opener has 88 runs with a top score of 83 also against Trinidad, but no other batsman has aggregated more than 50 runs for the team from the Land of the Flying Fish, with Rashidi Boucher being their next best scorer with 38.
They would be hoping to do much better today, but on a spin-friendly wicket and taking into consideration their susceptibility to the slower bowlers, which was highlighted in the way they laboured to score 104 against the Leeward Islands in their last preliminary round match, it is expected that Malta Supreme Guyana will come away with a comfortable win today and go on to face the host in Saturday’s final.
Joel Wilson and Lennox Abraham will call play in this fixture which can be a humdinger, while Patrick Gustard will handle the television referrals and Kellman Kowlessar will do the duties of fourth official under the astute observance of Michael Ragoonauth, the Match Referee.
By Calvin Roberts in Trinidad and Tobago
(Compliments of Carib Beer, Regal Stationery, Wartsila, Romaine Car Wash and GT&T)