USA claim Americas title
USA beat Cayman Islands in a rain-interrupted match to clinch the ICC Americas Division 1. Does this victory point at a bright future for USA? Leave your comments below
In a rain-interrupted match at Brian Piccolo Park, USA clinched the title with an 87-run win Cayman Islands, thus finishing their campaign unbeaten. A commanding opening stand of 194 between Sushil Nadkarni and Carl Wright put the USA firmly in the driving seat, with Wright going on to make a brilliant 112 from 105 balls. Nadkarni, the player of the tournament, made 84 from 103 balls with 10 fours. Kevon Bazil bowled well in difficult conditions to take 4 for 75 as USA reached 289 for 6 in 49 overs. Rain interruptions curtailed Cayman Islands' response and the match was eventually called to a halt with them struggling on 65 for 4 in the 24th over.
At the Central Broward Regional Park stadium in Lauderhill, the eagerly awaited clash between Bermuda and Canada was eventually abandoned late in the day with no result possible. Showers and lashing winds scuppered any chance of completing the match. Canada reached 190 for 6 in their 42 overs, while Bermuda's chase was cut short with the score on 53 for 1.
Suriname have been the team to watch over the past week, but they couldn't compete against a strong Argentina side who walloped them with time to spare in Lauderhill. Suriname posted a respectable 190 thanks to Charles Douglas's 74-ball 53, while Arun Gokoel stroked 30. Diego Lord again showed his class in picking up 3 for 26 from 10 overs. Argentina welcomed back player-coach Hamish Barton at the top of the order and, together with Pablo Ferguson, put on 99 for the opening wicket to settle any nerves. Barton made 68 from 88 and Ferguson 43 off 91 balls, as Argentina reached their target in the 46th over in scoring for the loss of four wickets.
"I am very honored to have captained one of, if not the best, USA teams that ever walked on a cricket field," the delighted captain, Steve Massiah, said. "We dominated some games and fought hard for every ball from sometimes difficult situations against supposedly superior opposition in other games. It's vital now that we strive to continue playing at the highest level. Cricket in the USA is on the up, and there is no doubt that we have the potential to be a world-class team and cricketing nation in the future."
Team manager, Imran Khan, was understandably elated with the championship title. "The whole process of selecting, training and moulding this team was a huge success, and winning the championship proved that we hit on the right formula," he said. "The results are there for all to see. What we have accomplished in a few short weeks is a reflection of the direction USA cricket is taking. Together with coach Clayton Lambert, who did an outstanding job, our goal was to create a solid unit on and off the field, and we did as reflected by our results. This is a great day for USA cricket, and if we keep moving forward positively in a united manner, I'm sure is the first of many more successes to come."