A typical Shivnarine Chanderpaul innings coupled with magnificent slow bowling gave the Guyana Jaguars a come from behind 35-run victory over Kent in their opening round match of the 2018 Cricket West Indies (CWI) Regional Super50 in Antigua on Wednesday at the Sir Vivian Richards Cricket Ground in North Sound Antigua.
After captain Leon Johnson called right at the toss, the Jaguars opted to bat and were bowled out in the final over for 233 with Kent’s opening bowler Mitchell Claydon wreaking havoc with a five-wicket haul.
The Jaguars left out Anthony Adams, Ramaal Lewis and Clinton Pestano and began with Shimron Hetmyer and Shivnarine Chanderpaul and found themselves in early trouble at 33 for 3 in the seventh over.
However, the 43-year old Chanderpaul found some useful partners that ensured the Jaguars put up a fighting total that eventually got them off the mark in Group B.
For the opening partnership, Shiv put on 31 with Hetmyer but a triple strike that left the Jaguars wobbly. Hetmyer hit four fours from 18 balls and his dismissal was followed by debutant Chanderpaul Hemraj and Johnson in the space of seven balls.
Raymon Reifer then joined Shiv and endured a testing period but they managed to put on 56 for the fourth wicket before the Barbadian was dismissed in the 24th over after facing 44 balls.
Wicketkeeper Anthony Bramble, who is in good batting form then joined Shiv and together they accelerated the scoring putting on 58 from just 51 balls. When Bramble was given out in the 33rd over after hitting three fours and three sixes the Jaguars had staged a nice recovery and were ready for a late assault.
However, Shiv who brought up another half century at this level followed shortly after. The ever-green “Tiger” batted for 97 balls in all and hit five fours and a six.
The Jaguars lower order then showed fight with debutant Sherfane Rutherford getting 24 from 42 balls and Romario Shepherd in this second List A game blasting 29 from 25 to see the score past the 230 mark which turned out to be 35 runs too many for the visitors.
In reply, Kent got off to a good start and were cruising at 119 for 1 in the 28th over before they lost their way.
The Jaguars spin-twins Devendra Bishoo and Veerasammy Permaul were the main weapons of destruction as they shared seven wickets to see Kent losing their last nine wickets for 79 runs crashing to a 35-runs defeat.
Left-arm spinner Permaul got the initial break through after the Kent openers were running away at 58 without loss in the 13th over. After opener Daneil Bell Drummond’s dismissal, Zak Crawley and Sean Dickson put on 61 for the second wicket before Permaul struck again to open the flood gates.
The Albion Cricket Club pair sent down 20 overs together for just 80 runs which made the difference. They were backed up by superb fielding and Shepherd in the comeback effort.
Opening victory represents a positive start to the Jaguars’ title quest and they will next take on the USA on Friday in another day game at the same venue while Kent will meet Jamaica Scorpions on Sunday.