Two shots at Olympic glory
By Ezra Stuart | Wed, May 23, 2012 - 12:02 AM
THE EXPANDED SACICOR GENERAL SUPER CUP bowled off on Sunday, and not without some controversy, with a number of teams not outfitted in the appropriate uniforms.
This year, the Barbados Cricket Association has decided to rebrand the 50-over and T20 competitions by bringing together teams from the renamed Elite division and the Division One to play against each other.
But it would seem that the new teams did not receive their uniforms for the first round, and it was an extremely shameful sight to see some of the teams outfitted in an assortment of coloured clothing.
It is inexcusable that new uniforms were not made available to the teams, especially those participating for the first time.
For example, some of the Police players wore red jerseys and others blue, not the way those representing a disciplined and uniformed institution should look, while other teams had to use some old club uniforms.
On the field of play, all the Division One teams lost rather easily to the Elite sides, and already some people, well aware that upsets can always be on the cards, are questioning the wisdom of having junior sides up against the senior sides.
School side Nature Valley Lodge and Ince Transport MTW were no match for CGI Maple and TeleBarbados Carlton, respectively, while Sagicor Life UWI humbled Counterpoint Wanderers before the scheduled lunch break.
Wanderers, who were sent in to bat, were skittled out for a meagre 56 on what they lamented was an inadequately prepared pitch, not firm enough, in their view, for such a match.
Even though pitches should always be properly prepared for a fair contest between bat and ball in limited overs cricket and certainly not be heavily doctored in favour of the bowlers, a score of 56 was still disappointing for a side with a couple of first-class players and a few others who have been called to national trials.
A result that caught the eye was Yorkshire’s close one-wicket win over YMPC. Who knows, the Hothersal Turning-based side can roll back the years and again do the Cup and Shield knockout double, which they achieved in 1983.
Yorkshire, who have never played at the highest domestic level, have been strengthened this year by former Barbados batsman Kurt Wilkinson and pacer Jomel Noel, who played first-class cricket for the Combined Campuses and Colleges.
Even though teams like Wanderers, LIME, the Barbados Cricket League, YMPC and Banks were recently playing at the top level locally, some of these sides have lost some of their leading players and are not as strong as before.
Despite splitting the 18 teams into two zones, meaning there will be a bye for one team from each zone every round, the BCA should’ve allowed cross-over matches, to avoid having 22 cricketers being idle every round.
Regardless of the zones, the best eight teams would be ones to advance to the quarter-finals and the best four to the semi-finals, depending on the format.
While no batsman managed a half-century, there were some excellent bowling performances, with Banks’ spinner Marlon Hoyte taking seven wickets for 21 runs in his ten overs.
Maple’s off-spinner Don O’Neal was almost unplayable for the Lodge schoolboys, ending with the amazing figures of 10-8-6-3 after his first seven overs were maidens.
It was also good to see Trinidad and Tobago and West Indies’ batsman Lendl Simmons playing from the first round, bucking the trendinstead of teams waiting until the semi-finals or final to fly in overseas players.
Predictably, the day’s highest totals were made at the batsman-friendly Lester Vaughan School ground, where over 500 runs were scored as the Guardian General Barbados Youth side gallantly chased down ICBL Empire’s total of 279-6 only to fall short by four runs at 275 when the last wicket unfortunately went by the run out route.
Another close encounter was at Wildey, where Tino Best held his nerve to see ESAF Pickwick overtake LIME’s total of 213-7 and earn a three-wicket victory with three balls to spare.
Defending champs BNB St Catherine, even without their four marquee players Derick Bishop, Patrick Browne, Kenroy Williams and Joel Leacock, made a victorious start to their title defence, successfully chasing down Seven Seas Police’s challenging total of 239 while losing only four wickets in the process.
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