T&T Red Force tasted defeat for the first time in the Colonial Medical Insurance Super50 Cup Tournament when the West Indies Emerging players defeated them by 10 runs on Wednesday night at the Queen's Park Oval in Port-of-Spain.
Off-spinner Jon Russ Jaggessar grabbed three wickets to restrict the West Indies Emerging Players to 243 all out in their 50 overs but for once their batsmen did not show up and finished on 233/9 off their 50 overs.
The inform Darren Bravo struck a workmanlike half-century and although all-rounder Yannick Ottley made 71 towards the end, as the West Indies Emerging Players led by Barbadian fast bowler Keon Harding proved too much.
The disciplined bowling by the youngsters was not catered to by the Red Force batsmen and their frail middle order was exposed. In the previous games, the top order took them to glory and this protected a soft underbelly which was ruefully exposed against the Emerging Players.
Bravo's 50 of 72 balls was good but he needed others to step up to the plate. Ottley was willing but in the end, he ran out of partners who were willing to use the willow properly and this left his team short.
Ottley's 71 off 80 balls with four sixes and two fours took them close but not over the line. His run out in the final over proved crucial.
Earlier, Justin Greaves underlined his credentials with a fighting 80 that took his team to 219/4 before they lost their last six wickets for 24 runs.
Greaves and skipper Yannic Carriah added 93 runs for the fourth-wicket which was the backbone of the effort. The Barbadian batted well against the Red Force spinners, keeping them at bay after two early strikes by skipper Imran Khan reduced them to 82/3.
He was able to take them to a position of power before the experience of the Red Force struck back. Greaves counted his 80 off 87 balls with seven fours and one six. Carriah was more subdued in getting 34 off 53 balls with one four.
Towards the end of the innings, Jaggessar and pacer Anderson Phillip proved too much and the slide ensued. Jaggessar ended with 3/33, while Phillip took 2/39 and Odean Smith 2/40. Khan ended with 2/43.
Gidron Pope fell in the second over when off-spinner Jon Russ Jaggessar sent him back.
The early wicket did not deter the Windwards effort as Kimani Melius and Joshua Da Silva battled manfully to bring them right back into the contest. Da Silva looked good against the spinners and followed up his unbeaten century in the last game with 34 off 47 balls with three fours. He was able to carve a second-wicket partnership with Melius worth 67 runs. He was, however, outfoxed by the Red Force captain Imran Khan, who also undid his partner Melius who made 39 off 72 balls with five fours.
West Indies Emerging 243 all out (Justin Greaves 80, Kimani Melius 39, Joshua Da Silva 34, Yanick Carriah 34, Jon Russ Jaggessar 3/33, Anderson Phillip 2/39, Odean Smith 2/40, Imran Khan 2/43) vs T&T Red Force 233/9 (50) (Yannick Ottley 71, Darren Bravo 50, Kyle Hope 34, Keon Harding 4/56, Ashmead Nedd 2/26) - West Indies Emerging Players won by 10
Reporter: Vinode Mamchan