Hosts should be no walk-over today
By Sean Devers
Demerara, who crushed Berbice at the Stadium in last year’s El’Dorado senior Inter County 50-overs cricket final, begin their 2009 campaign today against Essequibo at the Anna Regina ground from 09:30hrs in the opening round of the 3-team competition.
After being given a ‘run for their money’ in the 4-day format, the Ramnaresh Sarwan led Demerara side is again expected to prevail today but in the limited overs version of the game Essequibo is quite capable of getting past the powerful Demerara line-up.
The toss could be a key factor since the periods of the high and low tide of the Atlantic Ocean, which is just outside the Western boundary, dictates how the pitch plays with more bounce available when the tide is high.
While Essequibo should be more at home in the shorter version of the game the superior experience of the Demerara players should work in their favor on an outfield which should again be rough and heavy in most areas.
In Trevon Garraway and Trevor Benn, who both play division one cricket in the City, Essequibo posses a very capable new-ball attack and if the hyper-active Benn can ‘get into the heads’ of the batsmen with his gamesmanship and the pitch offer variable bounce, the first ‘power-play’ overs in the Demerara innings could set up the game.
Off-spinner Andrew Williams and national under-19 left-arm spinner Anthony Adams could also produce important spells for the home team which should receive plenty of support from what is anticipated to be a large working day crowd.
The Essequibo side will hope from a good start from Norman Fredericks and Mohendra Boodram, while Yogeshwar Lall, Delon Heyliger, Skipper Ramesh Narine, Norwayne Fredericks, Garraway, Wicketkeeper Geewan Singh and Williams are expected to lend support with the bat.
If national opener Shemroy Barrington is considered ultra aggressive, the innings of debutant Andrew Lyght Junior usually knows no dawn but begins at high noon. The battle between the openers and Garraway and Benn should be fascinating.
If Lyght forget that this is his debut and that he is playing for a place in the Guyana one-day team and just enjoy his batting, the crowd could be in for a treat of destructive stroke-play.
With Rajendra Chandrika, Krishna Deosarran, Sarwan, Leon Johnson, Steven Jacobs, Chris Barnwell, Troy Gonsalves, Zaheer Mohamed, Kelon Carmichael and Sauid Drepaul all capable of scoring quick runs, Essequibo will know that they need to take wickets to restrict the scoring.
Barnwell and Carmichael could share the new ball but it should be the spin attack of Mohamed, Jacobs, Gonsalves and Drepaul that could do the bulk of the work for Demerara today.
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