Cush slams superb century as USA win ICC Division 4

The United States of America (USA) beat Italy by eight wickets in the final of the Pepsi International Cricket Council's World Cricket League Division 4 at the Pianoro ground in Bologna on Saturday. Having been set a target by Italy of 186, USA claimed victory after a dazzling century by Guyana allrounder Lennox Cush set the side up for an easy win.

By virtue of reaching the final, both Italy and the USA joined Papua New Guinea, Denmark, Oman and host Hong Kong in the Pepsi ICC World Cricket League Division 3 to be staged at the end of January, 2011. Elsewhere, Nepal defeated Tanzania by 10 wickets in the third-fourth position play-off at while Cayman Islands beat Argentina by seven wickets to take fifth place. Nepal and Tanzania stayed in Division 4 while Argentina and Cayman Islands were relegated to Division 5.

After the group stage, the USA had finished on top of the table in the six-team tournament. Steve Massiah’s men were ready to avenge the Italy side that had inflicted the only defeat on the team during the course of the tournament’s group stages.

Jamaica-born Adrian Gordon had a fantastic day with the ball for the North Americans. The 22-year-old New Yorker claiming 4-35 in a spell that saw him dismiss the key wickets of Peter Petricola, Damian Crowley and Hayden Patrizi. After the innings opener Cush smashed his way to a 52-ball century to all but seal the win for the side. He departed one run later and the task of completing the win fell to Guyana-born Massiah and Carl Wright, the former Jamaica wicket-keeper/batsman.

“The team played well and I’m happy I was able to get a century today and help us win the match and the title,” said Cush from his hotel room in Italy. “We all played we’ll and we deserve to be the winners. It was a total team effort and as things worked out, today was my day.”

Cush will have a busy trip in the coming days. He will leave Italy and join the Guyana team in Georgetown as they continue preparations for the Airtel Champions League in South Africa, to be played from September 10-26.

Cayman Islands rounded off a disappointing week on a high finishing fifth in the tournament after they defeated Argentina by seven wickets.  Batting first, Argentina made 182-9 in their allotted overs, with Carlos Gibson striking 45 before retiring hurt and Tomas Francis adding 23 runs. Cayman Islands Conroy Wright was once again in good form, this time taking 2-19 and completing the tournament with 10 wickets in six matches.

In reply, Cayman Islands’ Ramon Sealy once again added runs to the board, striking a 57-ball 60 before departing to the bowling of Diego Lord. It was then up to Ryan Bovell (42 not out) and captain Saheed Mohamed (33 not out) to grind out the total and bring to a close a miserable week for Argentina who managed no victories in the entire tournament.