Regional Four Day Competition 2013-14 April 7, 2014

T&T leap into lead with big win

ESPNcricinfo staff

Led by a hundred from Kieron Pollard and strong bowling performances, Trinidad & Tobago thumped Jamaica by 145 runs to move to the top of the Regional Four Day Competition table.

Pollard, playing his second match since his return to first-class cricket from an injury lay-off, was responsible for hauling T&T's first-innings score from 58 for 3 to 244. He stroked eight fours and six sixes in his 111 before falling to Damian Jacobs, but his partnerships with Evin Lewis and Rayad Emrit help T&T tide over a rough start . Nikita Miller was the most successful bowler taking 4 for 78.

In reply, Jamaica lurched to 180 all out, their innings propped up by a 45 from Andre McCarthy and useful 20s from Miller and Damion Jacobs. Shannon Gabriel struck crucial blows at the top of the order in his 3 for 48 and was well supported by Marlon Richards and Imran Khan.

T&T's innings second innings hardly fared better than Jamaica's and save for forties from Darren Bravo and Lewis, and an unbeaten 56 from Imran lower down the order, their batsmen collapsed from 94 for 1 to 179 all out on the third day. Miller was the key bowler again, getting the wickets of Lewis and Pollard in his 4 for 40.

Set a target of 244 with more than a day's play left, Jamaica had no answers to an early assault from Richards, who struck three times in consecutive overs. The only noteworthy performance, as they stumbled from one collapse to another, came from McCarthy, who again stuck around with a determined 42 in a total of 98. Richards and Imran were the best bowlers for T&T, taking six wickets between them to end the match in 33.3 overs.

Fifties from Devon Thomas, Jahmar Hamilton and Gavin Tonge steered Leeward Islands to a five-wicket win over Guyana in a Regional Four Day Competition contest between the last two teams in the league.

Thomas and Hamilton put on 140 for the fourth wicket to revive a 279-run chase that was struggling at 28 for 3. After both batsmen departed quickly, Tonge and Yannick Leonard added an unbeaten 101 and ensured the side strolled to a comfortable win in 86 overs, undoing the damage caused when they gave away a first-innings lead of 66.

Another significant contributor to Leeward's win was legspinner Anthony Martin, who finished with a match haul of 9 for 97. His 4 for 48 helped restrict Guyana to 240 in the first innings, in spite of Leon Johnson's second first-class hundred.

Guyana had the advantage after they dismissed Leeward for 174 in the first innings. Thomas was the only batsman to score a fifty as Leeward struggled against Keon Joseph (4-53) and Zaheer Mohamed (3-12).

In the second innings, Martin and Leonard took nine Guyana wickets between them to dismiss the side for 212, restricting their overall lead to 278. Unlike their first innings, the middle order responded to the challenge of helping their team recover from an early stutter. Thomas missed out on his second first-class hundred by 10 runs while Hamilton made 54. Tonge scored three fours and two sixes in his unbeaten 57.

Offspinner Ryan Austin took 11 wickets in the match to bowl Combined Campuses and Colleges to an 82-run win over Windward Islands, in spite of an inconsistent batting performance from the former.

Austin ran through Windwards in the first innings, claiming eight wickets to skittle the side out for 157. His performance gave CCC a first-innings lead of 68.

CCC's batsmen failed to build on the lead in the second innings, however, folding for 115 with Austin, the No. 11, becoming only the fifth batsman in first-class history to be timed out. The spin pair of Liam Sebastien and Alston Bobb and medium-pacer Mervin Mathew shared nine wickets between them to restrict CCC's lead to 183.

Windward surrendered to the spin of left-armer Jomel Warrican and Austin, making just 101. The top order of Devon Smith, Tyrone Theophile and Keddy Lesporis tried to hold the chase together but the other batsmen failed to get their innings going. Warrican, playing his fourth first-class game, finished with a maiden five-for while Austin took 3 for 37.

Earlier, fifties from Kyle Corbin and Chadwick Walton helped CCC to 225. The pair added 104 for the fourth wicket setting a strong platform for the middle order, but Windward pulled things back with wickets from Sebastien and Nelon Pascal.