FOLLOWING their shocking two runs defeat at the hands of Barbados Pride in the third round last Monday, the Vishaul ‘Cheesy’ Singh led Guyana Jaguars 13-man squad departed these shores for Trinidad and Tobago yesterday morning.The Jaguars left their home den to take on the T&T Red Force in the fourth round of the inaugural West Indies Cricket Board/Professional Cricket League Regional 4-Day tournament, which bowls off tomorrow at the Queen’s Park Oval.
In an invited comment with Chronicle Sport prior to their departure from the Windjammer Hotel, Singh said his team will be looking to put the disappointing performance against the Barbados Pride behind them and come out on top over the Red Force unit.
“Looking back at the game against Barbados, things did not work out the way we planned it…we played very good cricket up until the final morning when we literally threw it away. We know these things happen in cricket and it is just something we have taken and moved on,” said Singh.
Despite the loss, the Guyana Jaguars who had defeated both Windward Islands Volcanoes and Leeward Islands Hurricanes in their first two matches, lead the six team points table with 39 points, followed by the Jamaica franchise who has 34.
T&T Red Force sits in fourth position on 23 points and according to Singh, they will be challenging the Twin Island Republic franchise lineup, with the aim of taking the Christmas break in pole position on the points table.
“We do have an entire tournament including two more first round matches ahead of us to look forward to, inclusive of the upcoming game against Trinidad and Tobago, in which we are looking to take maximum points and take the Christmas break in the leadership position.”
Looking back at the third round clash which ended tragically for the Jaguars, after being set 69 to win and were bowled out for 66, Singh said the side failed to execute even as complacency stepped in quickly.
Had they pulled off the victory, it would have been their first in 30 years on home soil, but injudicious shot selection and dubious umpiring decisions, saw the Jaguars being scuttled out for their third lowest total in Regional First-Class Cricket following their 41 against Jamaica (1986) and 56 they scored as British Guiana against Trinidad in 1939.
Nevertheless, Singh was optimistic of the victory being achieved after he dismissed Barbados within 25 minutes of play on the final morning, only to see his batsmen catapult without much of a resistance on a devilish wicket.
“Things went haywire for us on that final morning, but our plan is simple… we are playing well as a team, our batting department has been clicking and the bowlers are doing excellent, it’s just that one moment of complacency against Barbados we’ve had thus far.
We have however moved on from that defeat, starting with this upcoming game against Trinidad and Tobago and finish at the top of the points table, heading into the Christmas break,” stated Singh.
Head Coach of the Jaguars Esuan Crandon feels his side needs to put the embarrassing loss behind them as quickly as possible and focus on the remaining matches.
“We have been playing good cricket so far, except for the one bad session against Barbados which cost us the game, as complacency stepped in at a crucial point of the game. Having said so, we know that T&T is a very fierce opponent over the years, but we have our game plan in place and all we need to do is remain focused and execute well,” said Crandon.
He said his team is very disappointed with the loss and even took the time after the game to closely examine the areas which need to be worked out for future matches, even as they remain optimistic of their chances against T&T.
“Once we continue doing the things we have been doing and doing so well, then I know we can come out victorious over T&T in the upcoming match, taking maximum points from them to remain at the top of the points table.”
Meanwhile, president of the Guyana Cricket Board Drubahadur was present to meet with the team and held a brief talk with them prior to their departure for the Cheddi Jagan International Airport, wherein he cautioned them to remain focused, put the loss behind them and go out there and make the country proud.
Below are the points standing after three rounds of matches: