Perez’s 95 gives Demerara first innings lead over Essequibo

Joshua Persaud during his 31 for Demerara yesterday. He shared in an 84-run, second-wicket partnership with Raymond Perez to set Demerara’s platform (Photo by Royston Alkins)

Demerara ended day one of the Guyana Cricket Board (GCB)/Hand-in-Hand Under-19 three-day Inter-County tournament on 230 – 5, some 124 runs ahead of Essequibo’s first innings total at the Police Sports Club Ground, Eve Leary, yesterday.

Essequibo won the toss, elected to bat, and ended the first session 84 – 6 after 29 overs.

Their opener, Mark Ramsammy (2) was the first to go with the score on seven. He was followed by his opening partner and skipper Mark Williams (22) whose demise left Essequibo on 42 -2.

Mahendra Persaud (3), Stephan Campbell (15), Kurt Lovell (8) and Chanderpaul Mohabir (11) were the other batsmen dismissed during the first session.

Essequibo reached lunch with Guyana Under -15 player Sheldon Charles and the aggressive Joshua Jones at the wicket.

The pair, after the break, added 36 runs for the seventh-wicket before Charles (9) skied a delivery from Keshram Seyhodna to cover with the score 106 – 7.

Jones, who smoked off-spinner Richie Looknaught over his head for a huge six, was bowled by Sagar Hatharamani for a brisk knock of 25. His innings included four fours and a solitary maximum.

Essequibo, who struggled throughout their innings, lost four wickets after Charles’ dismissal and ended their innings on 106 all out from 38.2 overs, nearly 40 minutes after the lunch break.

Left – arm spinner Seyhodna grabbed 3 for 27 from 11 overs while off-spinner Hatharamani supported with 2 for 1. Four batsmen were dismissed via the run-out route to underscore Essequibo’s dismal batting performance.

Demerara, in their first innings, began positively after Bhaskar Yadram eased Jones through the covers for four and flicked him down to the fine leg boundary, taking eight runs from the first over.

Yadram continued his aggressive mode, spanking two additional boundaries to carry the score to 28 – 0 after fours overs. His opening partner Raymond Perez was more sedate, choosing to play the supporting role.

The two took the score to 31 -1 in the fifth over before Yadram was bowled by Jones, attempting a rash shot.

Joshua Persaud and Perez took the score to 51 for 1 at the end of the 10th over when Perez eased Lesley Allen down to the third man boundary for four.

The partnership continued to flourish. Perez stroked a delivery from Jones through the covers for four while Persaud, who looked pleasing on the eyes when executing the cover drive, stroked a delivery from Joel Fortune for four to carry the score to 82 – 1 at the end of the 12th over. The two saw Demerara to tea with the score on 86 – 1 with the former on 40 and Persaud on 15, 20 runs behind Essequibo’s first innings total.

Chances abegging

Perez was dropped twice in two balls during the first over after the tea interval before rain came and sent the players off the field.

He, subsequently brought up his half century in the first over after the break by cutting a Charles delivery for four then whipping a delivery from him off his pads for two runs to reach his landmark. His 50 came off 57 balls and took 88 minutes. Persaud, who stroked a delivery from Mohabir for four to carry his side to 102 – 1 in the 19th over was  bowled by Mohabir for 31 to end the 84-run, second-wicket partnership.

Persaud’s knock lasted 49 balls from 80 minutes and Demerara was then 115 for 2, with a first innings lead of nine runs.

Essequibo’s left arm spinner Fortune then struck late in the afternoon to remove Gavin Boodwah (11), Ronaldo Ali- Mohamed (21) and Raymond Perez (95).

Perez’s faced 125 balls in a 189-minute stay at the crease. He dished out 11 sweetly timed fours during his knock before being deceived by Fortune who ended the day with 3-49 from 16 overs.

Perez’s wicket, however, was the final bit of success for the Cinderella Boys as Ramnarine Chatura (23) and Looknauth (13) carried Demerara to the close with the score on 230 – 5 with a lead of 124 runs heading into day two.

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