A man-of-the-match performance from Feaz Mustapha (2-28 and 51) steered Queen’s College (QC) to a five-wicket victory over Berbice High School (BHS) in the National Sports Commission (NSC)/Allied Arts Department 40-overs-a-side cricket match at the Guyana National Stadium, Providence yesterday.
Replying to the BHS team’s score of 167-9 made off their allotted overs, QC reached 168-5 from 39 overs, with Sunil Rupee scoring an unbeaten 57.
Mustapha and Rupee joined forces after QC had been reduced to 41-3 in the 15th over, with Carlyle Collins (08), Tejprakash Persaud (11) and Jimol Marks (13) the batsmen back in the pavilion after Kirk Jhettoo grabbed 2-6.
Rupee and Mustapha then added 116 runs for the fourth wicket from 23 overs with some pugnacious shots as the opposition began to wilt under the pressure.
Rupee reached his 50 with his fifth boundary off 75 balls following a misfield by Kareem Hinds on the deep extra cover boundary off the bowling of Derwin Clarke.
Mustapha achieved his shortly after hitting four fours in the process and even though he was caught by Brian Hussain off Jhettoo, who also accounted for Avion Rodrigues two balls later, skipper Neil Barry Jnr., joined Rupee and they guided their team to victory with six balls to spare.
Earlier, BHS led by half centuries from Brandon Balkissoon (54) and Kumar Brijlall (51) recovered from a perilous position of 60-5
in the 22nd over to post 167-9 after winning the toss and batting.
The two put on a vital 71 runs, sixth-wicket partnership after BHS had gotten off to a shaky start losing the wickets of Brian Hussain (00) and Hardat Singh (02).
Both batsmen were bowled by the medium fast bowler Barry Jnr.
Skipper Tregon Henry (24) and Udesh Imrit (06) added a mere 10 runs for the third wicket before the latter was caught by wicketkeeper Rodrigues off Marks and when Henry and Hinds (01) were dismissed, QC were certainly looking at an early day in the field. But Balkissoon and Brijlall set about operation recovery with some cheeky singles raising their team’s 100 when Brijlall struck Mustapha’s first delivery after the water break through the cover region for four. Balkissoon reached his 50 from 92 balls when he struck Javed Rasheed through the covers for four but was bowled by the same bowler in the 36th over seeking to increase the scoring.
Brijlall stole the spotlight after the dismissal of Balkissoon, driving the QC bowlers with authority. He took a liking to Rasheed when he struck the bowler through the covers, followed by a straight hit back over his head for four two balls later to reach his 50.
But when he fell in the penultimate over after adding 32 runs for the seventh wicket with Clarke (02), BHS lost two quick wickets to Mustapha in the final over before they reached their eventual total, which turned out to be inadequate. Prior to the start of the match, both teams were met by Minister of Culture, Youth and Sport Dr. Frank Anthony and Minister within the Ministry of Education Dr Desrey Fox respectively, along with former West Indies all rounder and QC old-student Roger Harper, who bowled the first ball of the game.