Spin twins Zaheer Mohamed and Amir Khan produced magical spells for Demerara which whipped Essequibo by an innings and 54 runs, while a quartet of half-centuries from Berbice gave them the advantage over President’s XI yesterday in the Guyana Cricket Board (GCB) Senior Inter-County four-day tournament.
Playing at the Enmore Community Centre ground, the two spinners expertly exploited conditions for the past two days. Mohamed grabbed 6 for 11 and Khan 3 for 48, ending with remarkable figures of 10 for 57 and 8 for 110 respectively, taking the champs to victory with one day remaining.
With a stiff first innings lead of 164, Essequibo irresponsibly went from 51 without loss to a hapless second innings score of 110 all out in 34.4 overs. Opener Royan Fredricks top scored with 51, while Rajiv Balgobin (16) and Parmesh Parsotam (12) were the other Essequibo batsmen to reach double figures.
Earlier, Demerara racked up a mammoth 362 for 8, declaring at the tea interval. Christopher Barnwell (81), Mohamed (70) and Chris Pattadin (63) fired for the defending champions as Demerara resumed on 172 for 4, trailing by a 26-run deficit in reply to Essequibo’s first innings total of 198.
Barnwell, resuming on 48, went on to add 33 to his overnight score. He was involved in a 55-run partnership with Pattadin, who carved his solid half-century, scoring all of his runs on day three.
Pattadin then added 87 runs for the seventh wicket with the all-rounder Mohamed, who smacked four boundaries and a six during his knock. Bowling for Essequibo, Anthony Adams picked up 3 for 105, Fredricks 2 for 38, while Dellon Heyliger and Hemchand Persaud claimed a wicket each.
Over at the Everest ground, Berbice was led by an unbeaten 79 from former West Indies player Royston Crandon. Skipper Sewnarine Chattergoon scored 55 at the top of the order hitting four boundaries in his second-wicket, 108-run partnership with West Indies ‘A’ batsman Assad Fudadin who made a solid 58 from 162 deliveries.
The all-rounder Crandon was then involved in the team’s second century partnership with the pugnacious Jonathan Foo who carved a mature 54.
Off-spinner Collis Butts, son of the former Guyana and West Indies spinner Clyde Butts, was the pick of the President’s XI bowlers snapping up 3 for 40 from 29 overs with 10 maidens. He was backed up by Robin Bacchus, Romario Shepherd and Steven Sankar who claimed a wicket each.
After bowling out the President’s XI for 185 runs, the Berbice boys then amassed a formidable 265 for 6 at stumps on day two compliments of their top order guns firing in a big way. Earlier, right-handed opener Anthony D’Andrade was bowled off his first delivery from Shepherd.
After bringing up their half-centuries and the team’s century-run mark in 35.1 overs, the two left-handers Chattergoon and Fudadin were removed LBW off the bowling of Bacchus and Sankar respectively.
Crandon then joined forces with the big-hitting Foo who was more watchful and patient during his innings. They took their team pass the 150 and 200-run marks in 36 and 72 overs respectively.
Foo after looking set was trapped leg before by Butts. This dismissal triggered a collapse as Rajiv Ivan (1) and Anthony Bramble (2) fell in quick succession. Berbice have now acquired an 80-run lead over the President’s XI heading into the final day, with Crandon eyeing a possible ton and all-rounder Eugene La Fleur yet to score.