By Clifton Ross
ANTHONY Bramble, Chris Barnwell and Tagenarine Chanderpaul stroked half-centuries as the Guyana Jaguars ended day one on 263 for six against the Trinidad and Tobago Red Force and in a promising position, yesterday, at the Guyana National Stadium, Providence.
Barnwell clobbered 10 fours in his 58 off 104 balls while Bramble made amends for his failures in the previous rounds, ending on 63 not out off just 49 balls.
Meanwhile, it was another Ironman knock from the opener Tagenarine Chanderpaul who grafted 68 from 251 balls with 9 fours before he departed.
The gritty opener followed up fifties in Barbados and Antigua, with another innings which spanned 338 minutes. At stumps, the defending champs were 263-6 with Bramble eyeing what could be a brisk century when he resumes today with partner Devendra Bishoo who is 10 not out.
Red Force spinner Bryan Charles was the pick of the Red Force bowlers with 4-62 from 23 overs, providing the big breakthroughs when his team needed it.
After winning the toss and electing to bat, Jaguars opener Chandrapaul Hemraj cracked six fours and a solitary six during his 36 off 41-ball stay at the crease before he had his stumps disturbed by the cunning spin of Charles.
When Hemraj departed, Guyana were 37-1 with Chanderpaul yet to find his gears. Captain Leon Johnson (20) found the ropes on three occasions, but as the former Test batsman seemed to be finding his rhythm, left-arm spinner Akeal Hosein (1-65) served up a beauty which trapped the Jaguars lbw; minutes before the lunch break.
When play resumed at 69-2, Chanderpaul on 13 and Vishaul Singh, yet to come off the mark, then sought to get things going for the afternoon session.
Fresh off a half-century in the last game, Singh failed to replicate from the last match and succumbed to a catch at gully for 4, to give Charles his second scalp.
Tagenarine continued to grind the bowlers and found the occasional boundary as he was joined by Barnwell. The emergence of Barnwell saw the pair upp the scoring as they shared a half-century stand with both players eyeing fifties as the tea interval loomed.
Barnwell reached his milestone off 98 balls, batting for roughly 120 minutes with eight fours, motoring past Chanderpaul but departed shortly after, trapped lbw by skipper Darren Bravo’s (1-17) medium-pace, ending the 86-run partnership for the fifth wicket.
Bramble announced his presence at the crease with a four and six off Hosein and quickly raced into the 30s. Chanderpaul reached his third fifty of the season after some 295 minutes in the middle, facing 219 balls with just six fours as the Jags held down the final session of the day.
After 37 balls, Bramble raced to his half-century with 2 sixes and 8 fours, one of which was smashed through backward-point to bring up his milestone, as the Jags took their score well past the 200-run mark.
The Jags suffered a bit of heartache before play ended when Chanderpaul was caught by Red Force wicketkeeper Joshua DaSilva off Charles.
The spinner then grabbed his fourth wicket when all-rounder Kevin Sinclair lobbed a simple catch back at him to depart for a 3-ball duck, as Bishoo and Bramble remained firm when play ended.
Action continues at 09:30hrs today.