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Goal is to win!

rhondathompson, [email protected]

Goal is to win!

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SUCCESSFUL Super Centre Spartan’s captain Jabbar Niles would like to see more emphasis being placed on winning cricket matches in the LIME Division One Championship.
And he is hoping the Barbados Cricket Association (BCA) rewards teams appropriately where there are equal points at the end of the season.
Niles made the suggestion after Spartan and Sagicor UWI shared this year’s title with 132 points, but made it clear he wasn’t complaining because they knew the rules points system before the competition bowled off.
“It is a little unfortunate that we won six games, and the team that has tied with us has only won two games but we knew the system from the start of the season,” Niles said.
No complaints
“We’ve played with the system for about two years, so there can’t be any complaints. But it is probably something that the BCA can look into next season, in terms of if you got somebody sharing the cup,” he noted.
While Spartan won six matches and did not lose a game during the 13-round season, UWI got only two victories and were beaten twice.
“It just goes to show that some things need to be tinkered with, but all in all, it was put in place before the season started, so we knew what we were playing with, so there is no bad feeling about it,” the wicketkeeper/batsman added.      
With bonus points on offer, UWI got 37 batting points to Spartan’s 24 while the university cricketers earned 47 bowling points and the Parkites collected 46.
Had there been no bonus points, Spartan would have finished the season on 62 points and the UWI with 48, while 8000 Inc. Carlton, who came third with 128 points, would have ended on 51.
Just two centuries were scored at Spartan’s home venue, Queen’s Park this season. The experienced Wayne Blackman made an even hundred against Banks in the second series and promising opener Rashidi Boucher hit 103 versus Dover in the final series.
Niles conceded it wasn’t smooth-sailing scoring 300 runs within the 75-over cut-off on the surface in Queen’s Park to gain maximum batting points.
 “I won’t say we fell down [in batting] but winning is everything. We are playing in the Park.
It is hard to get batting points in the Park but we don’t worry about that. The Park is more a bowling track and we know that once we play in the Park, we would win games.
“Somehow, the eight points out of winning the games are a lot more than a team that would just get batting points and showed as we won six games,” Niles reasoned.
Niles, who ironically is now a student at the Cave Hill Campus, but had represented the tertiary institution while attending Combermere School, said the Spartan cricketers are happy to be joint champions.
“To our team, we actually feel like if we won it for ourselves, and to see that coming into the last two series we were marginally behind,” he said.
But he said there were some anxious moments on Sunday listening to hear whether UWI would capture the eighth Barbados Youth wicket to gain a bowling point that would deny Spartan a share of the title.
“We have a couple of superstitious guys in the camp and everybody was in one spot.
We were praying, we were talking about it and not only the 75th   over but basically the whole morning, everybody was listening,” Niles said.
“Obviously, you would be very nervous but then after the 75th over, it was jubilation because we were saying the whole day, joy is no good if it wasn’t for pain and we  endured the pain and then that nervous period but it felt good and it feels a lot better knowing that you are at the pinnacle,” Niles said.
He said the drama was the perfect way to end the season.
“It wasn’t like low-keyed or anticlimactic. It took drama and brought a good feeling to the end of the season. Some guys have been saying that the three-day competition is a little boring but it proves that it is not boring if you could have two teams fighting it out to the end and actually sharing the Cup,” Niles said.           

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