Guyana defeat Leeward Islands

PINELANDS, Barbados (CMC) – Jonathan Foo, Trevon Griffith, and Seon Hetmyer hit half-centuries to set the stage for a 76-run victory for Guyana over Leeward Islands in the limited-overs competition of the TCL Group West Indies Under-19 Challenge on Tuesday.

Foo smashed a belligerent 65-ball 87, Griffith made 81, and Hetmyer 50, as Guyana reached 302 for nine from their allocation of 50 overs in their opening round match on a hard, true MTW Sports Club pitch.

Kenroy David grabbed three wickets for 54 runs from seven overs for the Leewards, who slumped following an explosive start to the chase, and were dismissed for 226 in 48.2 overs with wicket keeper Jamal Hamilton leading the way with 43.

Part time off-spinner Royan Fredricks captured three for 25 from 5.2 overs and pacer Keon Joseph three for 55 from 10 overs to be the most successful bowlers for Guyana, who lost to Jamaica in the Final last year in St. Kitts.

Guyana elected to bat first in sultry conditions and the left-handed pair of Fredricks and Griffith took the attack to the new-ball bowlers on the large ground and raced to 48 before Fredricks cut Adelvin Phillip to point after slamming three fours and a six in his 23-ball 22.

Hetmyer, who scored 105 in the last round of the three-day competition, again looked elegant and along with Griffith, who played an array of audacious shots, put together 101 in 21.4 overs for the second wicket before Hetmyer was caught and bowled by Turnell Turner at 149 for two.

Foo, in his fifth year at regional youth level and second as an Under-19, looked dangerous from the time he walked to the crease and launched a vicious attack on the bowlers in his pugnacious innings which was decorated with seven fours and two massive sixes.

Foo benefitted from a chance on nine at 164 for two, and galloped to his first 50 in national colours at any level from just 37 balls as he and Griffith, who took 54 balls to reach his 50, dominated the Leewards.

Both batsmen showed signs of fatigue, as they plundered the bowling, and Griffith was soon caught and bowled by Turner at 180 for three in the 33rd over.

Dilon Heyliger was then lbw to Turner for a duck in the same over without addition to the total, but Guyana captain Eugene La Fleur, who contributed a sensible 34-ball 30, again showed maturity and along with Foo carried the score to 276 with an entertaining 96-run stand.

But La Fleur drove a delivery from Leeward Islands captain Kieran Powell to cover with four overs left in the innings.

Guyana, who like the Leeward Islands are yet to win a one-day title since this tournament commenced in 1998, batted positively and scored 100 runs in their last 11 overs.

Kenroy David removed Anthony Bramble for six and Herman Latcha for two, as Guyana hunted quick runs, while Foo, who had to take several drinks on the field to combat his exhaustion, lofted Powell to long-on in the final over.      

Powell, who bowled medium pace, supported David with two for 14 from two overs, as burly left-arm spinner Kadeem Phillip was the only bowler to concede less than 50 runs on the fast but rough outfield.

When the Leeward Islands began their reply, Powell began with all guns blazing and along with Kjel Tyson added 46 in five overs with explosive batting.

Joseph, who bowled with genuine pace, but struggled for control, got rid of Powell after he had walked down the track to debutant pacer Keyron Fraser and smashed for a straight six and a four through square-leg off successive balls.

Powell, hammered 27 from 26 balls with four fours and a six, and his demise, caught at square-leg flicking, was again a letdown by impetuous shot selection after looking well set.

The Leeward Islands, without senior player Chesney Hughes for disciplinary reasons, lost Tyson, who made 22 from 23 balls at 79 for two in the eighth over and their innings went into decline as La Fleur, bowling left-arm spin, and off-spinner Latcha tied the batsmen down during the last two Power-Plays.

Leeward Islands slipped slumped to 164 for eight, when Hamilton was taken at point off Fredricks, and though the Leewards’ lower-order batsmen enjoyed themselves, there were well past the point of no return.

Leeward Islands face Trinidad and Tobago in their second round match on Wednesday, while Guyana battle T&T in their next match on Friday.