Brooks hits hundred to give Pride early edge

Opener Chandrapaul Hemraj launches one downtown during another fine knock for the Jaguars (Orlando Charles photo)

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, CMC – Barbados Pride captain Shamarh Brooks hit his fourth first-class hundred to lead his side’s batting against Jamaica Scorpions in the Regional 4-Day Championship yesterday here.

Brooks was undefeated on 104, as Pride reached 261 for two in their first innings after they decided to bat on the first day of their 10th and final round match at Kensington Oval.

The incumbent West Indies “A” Team “Test” captain shared two successive significant stands with left-handers Shanye Moseley, who made 72, and Jonathan Carter, not out on 36.

Strangely, left-arm spinner Christopher Lamont shared the new ball with Derval Green, and this set the tone for the visitors for the rest of the day, as the Pride batsmen indulged themselves on a surface that played very true.

Brooks, a hometown favourite, due to his languid batting style, reached his landmark from 194 balls, when he turned Lamont into square leg for a single, bringing a roar of approval from the small crowd that turned up.

It was his first hundred in 24 first-class matches, since he collected 111 against Trinidad & Tobago Red Force in November 2015 at this venue.

He has so far batted 264 minutes, faced 194 balls and struck 14 fours, sharing 108 for the second wicket with Moseley and 96 – unbroken – for the third wicket with Carter.

Pride had a solid launching pad from Moseley and West Indies opener Kraigg Brathwaite when they put on 57 for the first wicket in just over an hour of batting.

Brathwaite made 32 before he was well caught by Fabian Allen, running to his right at mid-on, when he advanced to try and hit John Campbell’s uncomplicated off-spin over the top.

Brooks came to the crease and with Moseley scored relatively freely to carry Pride to lunch on 115 for one.

Moseley was unbeaten on 50, reaching his landmark from 82 balls, when he drove Rovman Powell through the off-side for a sweetly-timed ninth four.

He carried on smartly after the interval and with Brooks playing as easily as he typically does, he had the Scorpions attack at his mercy.

This prompted Scorpions captain Nikita Miller to turn to the tame off-spin of Andre McCarthy and he struck with his first delivery, when Moseley’s avarice got the better of him and Paul Palmer pouched a catch at mid-off from an ill-advised drive.

Pride were 165 for two, and Carter and Brooks carried them to 207 for two at tea before batting through the final session to fortify their side’s position.

Pride made two changes to their line-up from the previous match, bringing young fast bowling pair of Keon Harding and Dominic Drakes, son of former Barbados and West Indies all-rounder Vasbert Drakes, in to replace Kemar Roach and Miguel Cummins.

Scorpions have brought in McCarthy, Powell and Lamont, ahead of Assad Fudadin, Brandon King and Damion Jacobs.

Pride entered the match second in the table on 94.6 points and have so far earned two batting points, while Scorpions, starting third on 91 points, have so far gained no points.

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