Balchand Basdeo and skipper, Sharaz Ramcharran led Berbice to first innings points against Essequibo yesterday as the first day of the final round of the Guyana Cricket Board Under-19 three day Inter-County match ended with Berbice on 168-5 and a lead of 46.
Playing at the Everest Cricket Club ground, Ramcharran took his tally of wickets in the tournament to 16 after claiming four of Essequibo’s wickets, after they were sent into bat while Basdeo was unbeaten on 64 when play ended.
Essequibo reached 122-9 from 44 overs when their innings ended due to the absence of Keanu Harry who was sitting the Caribbean Secondary Examina-tion Council exams.
Essequibo suffered an immediate set back when opening batsman, Ricardo Peters was removed by pacer, Grisean Grant for nought with the score on four. Penetrative bowling by Berbice’s bowlers accounted for the continuous removal of the batsmen from the Cinderella County as they never recovered from a poor start slumping to 16-3. Grant and Ramcharran combined to take seven wickets between them to finish with figures of 3-27 from nine overs and 4-25 from 15 overs respectively. Leg spinner, Viendra Gooniah also bowled well to finish with 2-23 from six overs.
Only opening batsman Avinash Persaud (37) and Mohendra Balbadar (40) showed resistance against the destructive bowlers from the Ancient County.
Replying to Essequibo’s first innings, Berbice’s opening pair of Basdeo and Gooniah got them off to a good start with an opening partnership of 52 before Gooniah was run out for 12. Baldeo was very patient during his innings as he was partnered by Shimron Hetmyer (20), Akhash Homraj (18) and second round century maker, David Latchaya (17) who all failed to make big scores after getting starts.
Baldeo, who has faced 132 deliveries and struck three boundaries, has added 16 with Hakeem Hinds (12) who will resume batting with him today when Berbice innings continues.
Bowling for Essequibo, Akil Wallace, Paul Simboo and Akini Adams have so far taken a wicket each.