BARBADOS are bringing home another Under-13 cricket crown.
A case is being made for the St Kitts Festival trophy to take up permanent residence in Barbados.
Captain Lee Gaskin and Akil Greenidge hit half-centuries to share in a 172-run second-wicket stand as the Bajan lads retained their regional title after taking down fellow unbeatens Nevis in yesterday’s tense tournament decider at the Elquemedo Wilett Sports Complex in Nevis.
The win gave Barbados their fourth successive championship at this level and seventh overall in the last eight years, where the Bajans’ lone competition has come from their absent rivals Trinidad and Tobago.
But Nevis threatened to provide a stiff challenge in front of partisan home support of 3 000, after Barbados arrived an hour late from their ferry ride from St Kitts.
And the hosts looked ever menacing when the visitors lost Leniko Boucher with the score on 17 after chasing a wide ball.
However, Nevis’ next wicket didn’t come until the final over as Greenidge hit 83 and Gaskin finished unbeaten on 82 to flail the bowling to all parts of the ground in Barbados’ total of 191-2 off their allotted 25 overs.
Through Saeed Williams, the son of former West Indies opener Stuart Williams, Nevis started their run chase in similar fashion, scoring 30 runs in the first four overs before threatening with 115 for the loss of just three.
But like the five teams before them, the hosts never came to grips with the left-arm spin twins of Deswin Currency and Camarie Boyce, managing just 32 runs thereafter to reach 147 for seven.
Williams had a top score of 52 while Colin Archibald provided the only other significant contribution with 34.
“It was an all-round performance the entire tournament,” commented victorious coach Milton Small.
“I didn’t expect any challenge from the Nevisians and I told them to get as many runs as possible to put them under pressure from early.” (JM)