Monday, April 22, 2024

Cheer we go again


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IT’S A NEW YEAR, but what else is new?
Combermere winning cricket titles definitely isn’t.
The lads from Waterford captured their third consecutive Barbados Cricket Association Republic Bank Rightstart Everton Weekes Under-13 cricket title yesterday by virtue of a 60-run victory over Alexandra in the final at Kensington Oval yesterday.
Helped by a defiant knock of 31 from middle-order batsman Zidane Clarke, Combermere battled to reach 146 for seven in their 33 overs, after two overs were lost due to a rain delay.
The defending champions then produced
a superb display in the field to limit their opponents to 79 for nine at the end of their overs.
The contest was over long before the 33rd over, though, after Alexandra collapsed to 15 for five in the 14th over, with a stingy opening spell from David Scott and captain Shian Brathwaite.
It was the second successive year that Alexandra had stumbled to defeat in the final, after also losing to Combermere, by 49 runs, last year.
“I am very happy and very proud of the boys for what they have accomplished today,” Roddy Estwick, cricket master at Combermere, told SUNSPORT.
“To be honest, when we started the season I thought the boys were a little short of quality from the previous years.
“But the boys really put in a lot of hard work and they showed a lot of dedication and I’m glad that they were able to achieve their goal.”
It was a goal that had seemed unlikely at one stage after Alexandra’s opening fast bowler, Jadan Edmund, had accounted for the prized wicket of opener Brathwaite with the very first ball of the innings, out lbw.
And they were soon in further trouble when Edmund uprooted Lamar Springer’s leg stump to leave Combermere stuttering on 13 for two in the fifth over.
A 36-run partnership between Scott and Shakkae Marshall helped to steady nerves in the Combermere camp, before Desean Toppin’s sharp catch at slip accounted for Marshall, on 18.
It soon became 54 for four when Toppin ran from slip to leg slip to take a diving catch to dismiss Kofi Gilkes, just as the rain started.
After a ten-minute delay, Alexandra struck with the very first ball after resumption, Scott skying left-arm spinner Rikeem Headley to cover as Combermere slumped to 55 for five after 16 overs.
The diminutive Clarke proved to be Combermere’s savior, first adding 28 runs with Indar Persaud, and then 49 with Kaston Stoute, who finished unbeaten on 24 to help stage a remarkable recovery.
Alexandra did not help their cause by conceeding 34 extras, including 26 wides.
By the time Clarke was the seventh man out with the score on 132, with his 31 coming off 64 balls and containing three boundaries in just over an hour at the crease, Combermere had already clawed their way to safety.
In their turn at the crease, Alexandra never threatened Combermere’s total, as their batsmen failed to negotiate the pinpoint accurate bowling of Scott and Brathwaite.
Romi Holder managed only four runs from the 22 deliveries he faced, while Rashawn Alleyne did not fare any better, scoring one run from 26 balls, as Alexandra scored at a snail’s pace, 1.07 runs an over after the first 14 overs.
Scott finished with the impressive figures of two wickets for just four runs with three maidens from his seven overs, while Brathwaite took two for 17.
Alexandra’s total was boosted by a fighting knock of 26 from Edmund, who found a stubborn partner in Jevon Rock. Rock made 22, with the pair putting on 37 for the seventh wicket.
With outgoing Alexandra principal Jeff Broomes looking on, it did not prove to be enough, as a victory which would have been so welcomed for the Queen Street school, proved elusive once again.

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