KINGSTOWN, St. Vincent, CMC – Sherwin Ganga and Denesh Ramdin scored resolute half-centuries to lead a Trinidad & Tobago fight-back against Windward Islands in the WICB Regional first-class championship on Friday.
Ganga was undefeated on 72 and Ramdin scored 53, as T&T, sent in to bat, reached 172 for five in their first innings at the close on the rain-affected opening day of their fourth round match at the Arnos Vale Multi-Purpose Complex.
Left-hander Ganga and Ramdin dodged the showers, and put on 111 for the fifth wicket to rescue T&T from a precarious 54 for four.
Ganga has so far struck nine fours from 151 balls in close to three hours, and Ramdin batted just over two hours for nine boundaries from 95 balls before he was caught close to the wicket in the final hour off Garey Mathurin to become the last of three catches for Keron Cottoy.
T&T were in early strife, and subsided to 41 for three at the lunch interval.
Mervin Matthew had Justin Guillen caught by Cottoy for nine, Runako Morton was run out for 11, and Delorn Johnson had Lendl Simmons caught for 11 to leave the visitors 33 for three.
After the interval, Kenroy Peters had T&T captain Daren Ganga, Sherwin’s elder brother, also caught by Cottoy for two in between the showers, as the visitors reached 92 for four at tea.
But Ramdin came to the crease, and helped the younger Ganga transform the course of the innings, with steady batting to continue his fight for a recall to the West Indies side.
Injuries just before the start, prompted Windwards to leave out their captain Liam Sebastien and fast bowler Nelon Pascal.
As a result, wicketkeeper/batsman Lyndon James is leading the side, with Cottoy and Johnson coming into the line-up for the injured duo.
T&T have made one change, with Yannic Cariah making his first-class debut at the expense of experienced left-arm chinaman bowler Dave Mohammed.
The visitors are fourth in the competition, just two points ahead of their opponents, and will be eager to make progress, after they conceded first innings points in their drawn previous match against the England Lions on home soil at Queen’s Park Oval.
Windwards are fifth in the Championship on 19 points, and will be confident, following a tense, four-wicket victory over Guyana in the previous round at the same venue.
The home team have not won a match, let alone gain first innings points over T&T, since Rawl Lewis led them to an 86-run triumph five years ago at Shaw Park in Tobago.
Since then, T&T have won five of their last six encounters, and collected first innings points in the drawn other match, which coincidentally took place at this same venue.
TRINIDAD & TOBAGO 1st Innings
L. Simmons c Lesporis b Johnson 11
J. Guillen c Cottoy b Matthew 9
R. Morton run out 11
*D. Ganga c Cottoy b Peters 2
+D. Ramdin c Cottoy b Mathurin 53
S. Ganga not out 72
A. Jaggernauth not out 6
Extras (lb4, w3, nb1) 8
TOTAL (5 wkts, 58.1 overs) 172
Y. Cariah, I. Khan, R. Emrit, S. Gabriel to bat
Fall of wickets:1-18, 2-33, 3-33, 4-54, 5-165
Bowling: Matthew 9-1-35-1, Johnson 14-2-34-1, Peters 14-4-29-1, Mathurin 10-3-34-1, Cottoy 11.1-2-36-0
WINDWARD ISLANDS: T. Theophile, J. Charles, A. Fletcher, D. Hector, *+L. James, K. Lesporis, K. Cottoy, G. Mathurin, M. Matthew, K. Peters, D. Johnson
First-class debut:Y. Cariah (T&T)
Umpires: G. Greaves, R. Illingworth (England)
Match Referee: S. Allen