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Under-19s looking to be more aggressive


Philip Hackett

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A?more aggressive approach could be part of Barbados’ strategy as the junior cricketers enter the third round of matches in the WICB Regional Under-19 Cricket Tournament, tomorrow.
After positioning themselves for an outright win, Barbados were frustrated yesterday by the torrential showers resulting from Tropical Storm Ernesto.
Some optimism existed that there could be play but after repeated showers, the match was eventually abandoned at 2:15 p.m., though the writing was on the wall much earlier.
Barbados earned ten points from the match and the Leeward Islands 3.5.
Leewards were set to resume on 50 for three, still trailing by 65 runs with seven wickets standing.
As the showers dumped water on the playing field at Bayfield, Barbados may have been regretting not having declared earlier to allow themselves a chance of winning ahead of the showers that had been predicted the previous day.
“It’s unfortunate that we are in a such a good position and we’ve got the rain,” Barbados’ coach Dexter Toppin told the SATURDAY SUN, shortly after the match was abandoned as a draw.
“I think the boys are playing some reasonably good cricket. I hope that the weather will stay away and give us the chance to execute on the field.
“Once it stays away, I think the boys are in good spirits and should do well in the tournament,” said Toppin as he looked forward to the remaining matches.
Toppin defended the decision to extend the first innings lead rather than declare at tea on the penultimate day with a lead of 69, but admitted that a more forthright approach may have been justified, though the weather may still have been decisive.
“The lead is very important. A hundred runs and looking to bat once is very important. I always believe that the bigger the cushion you get, it helps you to control the game,” Toppin said.
“It’s food for thought. Once you go forward with a positive mind and things work well in our favour, we can look at a situation like this again and work with it.
“I think if you want to win the tournament you have to be aggressive and you have to be positive so all of these are lessons that the boys can learn and as coach, I can learn from it also.”
Toppin was very impressed by the performance of captain Shai Hope, who hit his century second of the tournament.
The two other matches, between Guyana and Jamaica at Foursquare Oval, and between Trinidad and Tobago and the Windward Islands at the Pine Basin were also abandoned as a draw with no play on the final day.
In the third round starting tomorrow, Barbados face Jamaica at Weymouth; Trinidad and Tobago oppose Guyana at Pine Basin and the Windwards and Leewards square off at the Desmond Haynes Oval.

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