GROS ISLET, St Lucia, CMC – Barbados let their advantage slip as Jamaica hit back strongly, on a competitive opening day of their final round TCL Group West Indies Under-19 Challenge clash yesterday.
Jamaica were sent tumbling to 70 for five before lunch as Barbados snatched the early advantage but Ramon Senior stroked an accomplished, unbeaten half-century while Kemar Marshall added another, to see the defending champions to 227 for six at the close.
Senior hit 72 and crafted two crucially important partnerships with Marshall, who scored 59 and Donovan Nelson, who was also unbeaten on 30.
Left-arm seamer Ravindra Persaud has been Barbados’ best bowler so far with three for 32 and it was he who instigated Jamaica’s slide after they opted to bat first at the Gros Islet Playing Field.
He trapped Peat Salmon lbw without scoring with just five runs on the board and then removed the other opener Orane Williams for 13 to a catch at second slip by Kyle Mayers at 20 for two.
Senior started a recovery with captain Paul Palmer but was forced to retire hurt on five with a sprained ankle, with the score on 28 for two.
John Campbell was then caught behind at 46 for three off Mayers’ lively medium pace and Palmer was disastrously run out for 20 three runs later, after being sent back by Jermaine Blackwood as he attempted a quick single.
When Blackwood skied a full toss from leg-spinner Shakeem Wilkinson to deep mid-wicket to depart for nine, Jamaica were in strife at 70 for five.
But Senior, who returned at the fall of the fourth wicket, proceeded to add 83 for the sixth wicket with Marshall, as Jamaica dominated the post-lunch session.
Senior struck 10 fours and a six off 207 balls in 282 minutes at the crease while Marshall, who was forthright in his approach, cracked seven fours and three sixes, in an innings spanning 125 balls and 147 minutes.
The return of Persaud, however, accounted for Marshall as he fell caught and bowled in the third over of the bowler’s second spell.
After his dismissal, Senior found an able ally in Nelson and both survived a couple of chances to add another 74 to further frustrate Barbados’ bowlers.