Austin runs through T&T with seven
CAVE HILL, Barbados, CMC – Ryan Austin kicked off this year's Regional 4-Day tournament in pretty much the same way he concluded last season with impressive bowling against Trinidad & Tobago on Friday.
The T&T-born Barbadian off-spinner collected seven wickets for 84 runs from 25.4 overs, as T&T, choosing to bat, were dismissed for 229 in their first innings about 15 minutes before the scheduled close.
Kieron Pollard, whose reputation in the shortest version of the game has become legend, threatened to upstage Austin with the top score of 60 that included half-dozen fours and a pair of sixes from 70 balls in 2 ¼ hours.
Shannon Gabriel then made an early breakthrough, when he had Romel Currency caught at gully for a duck, as CCC reached 11 for one at the close on the opening day of their day/night first round match, which is being contested with a pink ball at the 3Ws Oval.
Currency, the CCC captain, parried a short, sharp, rising delivery in the third over of his side’s innings, leaving Trinbagonian Yannick Ottley, not out on seven, and Kevin McClean, not out on one, to bat through until the close.
T&T were indebted to Pollard for giving them a respectable total, after they crumbled to 141 for six at tea. The big-hitting Pollard savagely drove McClean through cover for his fifth four to reach his 50 from just 64 balls, playing some of the strokes that helped T&T win the WICB’s Caribbean T20 tournament almost two weeks earlier a few kilometres down the road at the historic Kensington Oval.
Pollard eventually fell, when he miscued an innovative, cross-batted stroke and was caught at extra cover off McClean just before Austin brought the T&T innings to a close when he bowled batting bunny Gabriel.
Earlier, T&T were greeted by a lively pitch and made steady progress, as they reached 81 for two at lunch.
Lendl Simmons pulled a short ball from Jason Holder over mid-wicket for six before he was caught behind down the leg-side off the glove for 10, trying to work a delivery from the same bowler off his hips.
Jason Mohammed joined Adrian Barath and comfortably put on 47 for the second wicket before he was caught at forward short leg off Austin for 20.
After the interval, Austin worked his way through the T&T middle-order, leaving the visitors wobbling at tea.
After Barath was trapped lbw to McClean for 28 playing across a well-pitched delivery before Austin hadDarren Bravo caught at backward point off the leading edge for 15.
Dwayne Bravo, Darren’s elder brother, was fortunate on five, when Austin dropped him for five, when he skied a slog/sweep, but he failed to make full use of his chance before he was caught at leg slip off Austin for 11.
T&T captain Denesh Ramdin too, survived a chance, when Kyle Corbin dropped him on 13 at second slip off Holder.
Ramdin, like Bravo before him, did not capitalise on his chance and he was caught behind for 13, when he top-edged a sweep off Austin.
After the break, Pollard and the indiscipline of the CCC bowlers, mainly Austin with 16 no-balls, allowed T&T to beef-up their total, after Austin had Rayad Emrit caught at deep mid-wicket essaying a slog/sweep for seven and Sunil Narine stumped for eight.