Opener Anthony Khan struck a fluent half century, while Sachin Balgobin picked up four wickets to lead the President’s XI to a six-wicket victory over Essequibo when the Guyana Cricket Board/Dave West Indian Imports inter county U15 50-over tournament commenced yesterday.
Balgobin bowled tidily in picking up crucial wickets before Khan anchored his team innings with sensible batting as he and fellow opener Altave Balman posted 60 to get the President’s XI chase off to a decent start at the Everest Cricket Club.
The President’s XI asked Essequibo to bat and openers Shaazif Mohamed (08) and Ravy Nandalall (08) added 33 before the latter was caught off Nityanand Mathura, while Mohamed who got off the mark with a boundary off Dillon Ramsaroop, was run out as Essequibo lost their second wicket without addition to the score. Justin Mague (00) was stumped off Budram Lakeram, while Civion Arokium (00) was lbw to Mathura, leaving Essequibo on 41-4. Spinner Balgobin then snapped up four quick wickets to maintain his team stranglehold on the game; he had Rajindra Ramballi (02) and Govinda Tulsie (00) caught
before uprooting the stumps of Deo Kanhi (06) and skipper Terrence Softleigh (00), further reducing Essequibo to 56-8.
However, Aryan Doodnauth and Gladewin Henry Jr added respectability to the score with a stand of 36. The pair batted sensibly as they rotated the strike well; Doodnauth struck three fours before he was bowled by Sanjay Algoo for 26. Sherwin Stoll slammed three fours in scoring 14 while Henry Jr was left not out on five as Essequibo were bowled out for 116 in 42.1 overs. Balgobin finished with 4-13 from nine overs while Mathura had 2-19.
Khan and Balman hardly looked troubled as they rotated the strike well with Khan taking full advantage of the bad balls. But, Softleight provided his team with the breakthrough when he had Balman caught for seven and then disturbed the stumps of Bhaskar Samlall without scoring to leave the President’s XI at 61-2.
The right-handed Khan continued to play his shots as he timed the ball well on both sides of the pitch. He smashed three consecutive fours and brought up his half century with another well timed boundary before he was removed by the steady Softleigh with the score on 79; his even 50 contained eight fours. The President’s XI then lost Mathura (00) bowled by Doodnauth (1-16) before Algo who struck four fours in an unbeaten on 35 and Rezekiel Renee (03*) saw their team home as they finished on 117-4 in 30.4 overs. Softleigh bowled with control and such was his consistency that he didn’t concede a boundary; he delivered eight overs and picked up 3-19.
The competition continues today. (Zaheer Mohamed)
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