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Windwards play Leewards today

Windwards play Leewards today

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The Windward Islands cricket squad, buoyed by their enthralling one wicket win over Trinidad and Tobago last Saturday will look to increase their tally when they take on Leewards in St. Thomas, US Virgin Islands, starting today Friday February 4. It will be a ‘Small Island’ toss up and interest in that showdown will be high. {{more}}

The Windwards’ triumph, their first for 2005, came in a dramatic turn around of fortunes. It took them to 22 points, the same as the Leewards, but they, as well as second placed T&T on 24 points were trailing leader Jamaica on maximum 48.

Wrecked for a paltry 63 in their first innings and conceding a 97 run lead, it seemed that the Trinidad and Tobago team had matters in control.

But T &T fell for 104, setting a victory target of 202.

Windwards achieved the landmark in an extended pre-tea session. Last wicket pair Deighton Butler and Kenroy Peters in a determined 14 run stand overhauled the magic number to give their team the amazing turn around.

Windwards were pushed to their triumph by the performance of St. Lucian Darren Sammy. His 59 in the second innings went a long way towards his team’s cause. He shared a crucial seventh wicket stand of 56 with captain Rawle Lewis, taking the score from 101 for 6 to 157.

Sammy, with match figures of 6 for 38 was an automatic choice for the Man of the Match, even though Trinidad and Tobago’s allrounder Richard Kelly was in contention.

Kelly wrecked the Windwards first innings, with 6 for 31 and followed with 2 for 40. His 27 in his second turn at the crease added to his display.

But Sammy’s allround ability was part of a team effort.

The match proceeded in frentic fashion with 18 wickets falling on the first day. 16 fell on the second day as Trinidad and Tobago collapsed in the post lunch session.

When the day ended, Windwards were 70 for 4. The victory came on the third day of the scheduled four-day fixture amidst tension and vociferous support from a gathering of die-hard cricket lovers at Arnos Vale Playing Field.

The Windwards/Leewards clash will have added intrigue with the Leewards fresh from an innings and 14-run victory over Barbados.

Jamaica disposed of Guyana to establish their lead, and they play T&T in Jamaica while Barbados hosts Guyana at Kensington.

Action resumes February 11 to 14 when the Windwards host Barbados at Arnos Vale Playing Field in one of three sixth-round games. The final will feature two teams with the most points and is scheduled for March 18 to 22. That will be for the Carib Beer Challenge.

The team with the most points during the rounds will be declared thew League Champion.

Prizes up to US$17,500 are at stake for the Challenge and League winner.

In addition, cash awards of US$1500 are up for the most runs, most wickets, most catches, best allrounder, best wicketkeeper, and most promising fast bowler.

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