BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, CMC – Left-arm spinner Nikita Miller bowled five-time defending champions Jamaica to a 63-run victory over Barbados in the Regional 4-Day Championship yesterday.
Miller collected 5-34 from 23.5 overs, finishing with match figures of 10-67, to earn the Man-of-the-Match award, as the Barbadians, chasing 192 for victory, were bowled out for 128 in their second innings about 35 minutes before tea on the third day of their first round match at Kensington Oval.
Jamaica captain Tamar Lambert supported Miller with 2-14 from six overs of his uncomplicated off-spin and leg-spinner Odean Brown grabbed 2-48 from 18 overs.
Shane Dowrich was the top scorer for Barbados with 31 not out, but no other batsman reached 20, as the home team a made mockery of friendly conditions.
The victory was formalised, when Miguel Cummins was run out for a duck backing up too far and failed to beat Jermaine Blackwood throw from short third man to the bowler, Miller.
The result meant that Jamaica started their defence with 12 points and Barbados slumped to their sixth straight defeat in regional tournaments in the last month.
It follows four straight losses in the Caribbean Twenty20 Tournament and a 75-run defeat in the preceding first round match of the Regional Super50 Tournament last Thursday.
Starting the day on 13 without loss, the Barbadian opening pair of Kraigg Brathwaite and Rashidi Boucher played positively against fast bowlers Andrew Richardson and Sheldon Cotterrell.
But from the time Lambert turned to an all-spin attack with Miller bowling from the Joel Garner End (north) and Brown from the Malcolm Marshall End (south), the complexion of the game was transformed.
Brown made the breakthrough when Brathwaite was caught behind for 17 playing defensively forward before Miller bowled Boucher five overs later for 14, leaving Barbados 35 for two.
The two Jamaican spinners continued to keep runs at a premium and two more strikes from Miller sent Barbados stumbling to 76 for four at lunch.
Miller had Barbados captain and West Indies batsman Kirk Edwards caught at forward short- leg for eight, and four overs later, Kyle Hope was also caught at forward short-leg for 15.
After the interval, Brown tightened Jamaica’s grip, when left-hander Jonathan Carter tried to force him through the off-side off the back-foot and was bowled for nine, and Miller trapped Roston Chase lbw for for 16 before Barbados passed 100.
Lambert introduced himself to replace Brown and snuffed out a Barbadian rearguard, when he had Kevin Stoute caught at long-on for 11 and trapped Christopher Jordan lbw for a duck before Cummins was left stranded.
Barbados face Guyana in the second round of matches, starting on Friday here, but Jamaica will be sidelined, following logistical challenges which have put back their match against the Combined Campuses & Colleges to April.