By Frederick Halley
TORONTO, Canada – Seventeen-year-old Matthew Nandu ended the Scarborough Cricket Association (SCA) season on a high note despite his team Kaieteur International B losing their final First Division game to United Titans at the Ashtonbee Number Two ground here last Sunday.
The prolific left-hander, who enjoyed a dream season in both the SCA and Brampton-Etobicoke & District Cricket League (BEDCL) slammed 11 fours and a six in a brilliant innings of 80 as Kaieteur International B were bowled out for 215 in 42 overs in the reduced 45-over affair.
United Titans, who like Kaieteur had no chance of winning the First Division crown, reached the required target in 42.2 overs, losing seven wickets in the process.
Asked to take first strike, Kaieteur International B were heavily indebted to Nandu with Navin Nauth and Jordan Pirali supporting with 33 and 30 respectively. Nauth struck four fours while Pirali’s innings included three boundaries.
Bowling for United Titans, Ali Hassan claimed four for 44 from eight overs while Roshan Ali Hemani took three for 36 from nine.
Hemani crowned a fine all-round performance, hitting a fine 52 off 45 balls which included six fours and three sixes and received admirable support from Bilal Chaudhry and Mohamed Chaviwala with 39 and 30 respectively. Trushil Patel ended with three for 26 from eight overs and Devindra Nauth two for 38 from seven.
Despite playing only four matches in the SCA First Division, Nandu, the son of former Guyana and West Indies Under-19 leg-spinner Arjune Nandu, finished the season with the most runs, his 318 being 43 more than Toronto Rhino’s Aamir Khan who totalled 275 from eight matches. Abhishek Basin (Toronto Rhinos) was third in the aggregate, scoring 205 from six matches, including 119 in last Saturday’s decisive encounter versus Durham United.
Nandu’s 146 in the first match of the season was also the highest in the division while he also struck two half-centuries for an average of 106 and a strike rate of 91.38.
Meanwhile, Nandu’s Kaieteur Cricket Club (KCC) are going all out to claim top honours in the EBDCL Premiere League, having already secured a playoff berth with one game remaining on Saturday. The playoffs start on October 11.
KCC have won six of their eight games, including a huge 133-run victory over Hurricanes in their last encounter, played last Saturday in Waterloo.
Arjune Nandu, who is still active, turned back the years with an attractive unbeaten 50 off 65 balls and, along with Theron Ramlal who scored his third consecutive half-century (67), ensured KCC reached 241 for seven in 47 overs.
Hurricanes were bowled out for 108 with Raqib Shamsudeen (three for 21), Daniel Arjunen (three for 23) and Ramlal (two for 32) being the chief wicket-takers.
Matthew Nandu, who had the unique distinction of being the youngest player to be drafted in last year’s Global T20 Canada, has compiled 583 runs to date from seven innings with an incredible average of 97.1. His three centuries include 123 not out while he also registered scores of 167, 126, 84 and 51.