ST JOHN’S, Antigua, CMC – Prolific off-spinner Rahkeem Cornwall has captured the Courtney Walsh Award for the most wickets in the just-concluded first class championship, as he continues to press his claim for a maiden call-up to senior West Indies colours.
The 26-year-old, who has played extensively for West Indies A, finished with 54 wickets at an average of 17.68, and was the only bowler to pass 50 wickets in the season.
He also had a decent season with the bat down the order, ending with 419 runs at an average of nearly 28, as Leeward Islands Hurricanes produced a strong showing to finish third behind five-time champions Guyana Jaguars.
Cornwall, who made his first class debut five years ago, has taken 256 wickets at an average of 23, including 17 five-wicket hauls.
However, he has been consistently overlooked by the Courtney Browne-led selection panel, even in the shorter formats where he has also excelled.
During the last Regional Super50, Cornwall averaged 46 with the bat and led the bowling with 14 wickets. Overall, he boasts an average of 35 in List A cricket and has taken 51 wickets.
In the first class championship, Cornwall was ahead of Jaguars left-arm spinner, Veerasammy Permaul and Trinidad and Tobago Red Force leg-spinner Imran Khan, who both claimed 42 wickets apiece.
Meanwhile, veteran left-hander Devon Smith dominated the batting aggregates for yet another season, gathering 745 runs at an average of nearly 44.
Hurricanes opener Montcin Hodge was the only other batsman to pass the 700-run mark with 711 runs at an average of 39.
For his efforts, Smith picked up the Vivian Richards Award for the most runs in a season while Red Force’s 22-year-old Anderson Phillip claimed the Andy Roberts Award for the Most Promising Fast Bowler, after bagging 28 wickets at 24 apiece.