A composed century from Montcin Hodge carried the Leeward Islands Hurricanes to a two-wicket win over Guyana Jaguars at Providence Stadium yesterday in the Cricket West Indies Regional Four-Day Championships.
Jaguars’ 15-match undefeated streak came to an end as the Hurricanes, resuming on 32-1, battled the weather as well as the spinners on a flat track to reach 296-8 when Jason Peters pulled Devendra Bishoo into the mid-wicket boundary for a six off the third delivery in the 109th over. Peters made a signal to the heavens after hitting the six in respect to his mother who passed away recently.
Despite a four-minute rain interruption in the first session, Hodge resumed on 17 and solidified the innings with composed cricket shots, picking the bad balls when necessary and finding the ropes on 14 occasions during his 320-ball 127.
The 31-year-old Anguillan brought up his second century of the season with a push down the ground off of Bishoo.
However, with the rain threatening the venue with slight drizzles, left-arm orthodox spinner Veerasammy Permaul induced a soft return catch with Hurricanes nine runs short of their target, ending Hodge’s near seven-hour stay at the crease.
After the match, Hodge said the century kept him on track for his goal in the tournament which is to score three centuries.
He later explained that his captain, Kieran Powell, asked that one of the guys from the top stay and bat throughout the innings and score big.
Hodge, later named Man-of-the-Match, explained that the contest was tainted with difficulties but was a good feeling to build momentum heading into the sixth round with a victory over the defending champions.
Hodge’s overnight partner, Keacy Carty facilitated strike rotation during their second-wicket stand of 153. Carty made use of his three lives after being dropped by Anthony Bramble behind the stumps on one on Thursday as well as by Trevon Griffith in slips on 11 and Leon Johnson at cover on 58 to press on to 67 with nine boundaries. However, Bramble had his revenge, diving to his right to pull off the catch and give Keemo Paul the break through with Hurricanes 169-2 heading into tea.
Hodge was joined by Terrence Warde and the pair forged a 42-run partnership for the fourth wicket.
However, it was his 59-run stand with Guyanese-born Peters that took the match away from the Jaguars. Peters finished unbeaten on 37, with three boundaries and a lone six, fending off Permaul who fought back late in the innings to dismiss Orlando Peters and Jeremiah Louis in the space of four runs, leaving Hurricanes needing one run to win and Jaguars requiring two wickets with the 250 in attendance in suspense.
At the end of the match, Clinton Pestano stated that that’s the way cricket goes, “you win some you lose some,” crediting the exceptional batting of Hodge as the reason for the team’s first defeat.