GCC got past host Malteenoes Sports Club (MSC) by four wickets yesterday in the second semi-final of the Georgetown Cricket Association’s (GCA) Carib Beer T20 first division cricket tournament to book a spot in the final against DCC on a date to be announced shortly.
GCC won the toss and asked MSC to bat on a track which was not ideal for playing through the line, but which was hardly responsible for the dismissals of the batsmen as the hosts crashed to an inadequate 83 all out in 17 overs as only Skipper Steven Jacobs (22), Nichosie Barker (2]) and Lennox Cush ( 10) reached double figures in sultry conditions.
Left-arm spinner Anthony Adams produced a frugal four-over spell to capture 3-9. while Raj Nannan (2-15). Renaldo Ali Mohamed (2-11) along with left-arm seamer Raymond Reifer, pacer Ronsford Beaton and left-arm spinner Devon Lord, who had a wicket each, supported well with the ball for the Bourda boys who responded with 84-4 with 21 balls to spare.
The win was not as easy as the GCC fans might have imaged with 84 required from 120 balls. Robin Bacchus (2), Jeetendra Sookdeo (4) and Vishaul Singh (9) were all back in the pavilion with just 25 runs on the board in seven overs. But the level headed Reifer (20 from 32 balls) and Mohamed (8) steered the rocking ship to shore with an intelligent and responsible unbroken 22-run stand from 19 balls as the tournament rules which states the fast bowlers must bowl at least eight of the 20 overs meant that off-spinner Cush and former Guyana Under-19 leg-spinner Steven Sankar did not bowl a ball for MSC.
A raucous gathering watched as Imran Hassan, who never suggested permanence, was bowled for a duck by Bajan Reifer at 8-1 before Jacobs and Barker consolidated the position with a 37-run stand before Barker, who pulled Beaton for four and square drove him to the boundary next ball when he pitched up, was taken at point with a loose cut off Lord at 45-2.
Former Guyana T20 player Deon Ferrier (1) was bowled by Adams a run later before Jacobs, who lofted Reifer over mid-on for four and danced into Lord to effortlessly hit him out of the ground, threw his wicket away trying to hit a six off Adams only to see Beaton at deep mid-wicket hold the catch.
Nine runs later, the burly Orin Ford, another former Guyana T20 batsman, played across and was bowled for one by Adams. When Cush played an impetuous shot and was taken in the deep and Kellon Carmichael (3) was trapped LBW, Nannan had struck twice in two balls to leave MSC wobbling on the ropes in their own backyard at 69-7.
Things got progressively worse when Permaul (1), making his debut for MSC, hit Beaton to long-on at 71-8 before Mohamed picked up the last two wickets with the score on 82 to bring a disappointing end to the innings which was aided by 19 extras but undermined by 63 dot balls and reckless shot selections.
When GCC began their reply Bacchus was LBW to Jacobs and Sookdeo played an injudicious scoop off Carmichael for slip to run across to short tine leg to hold the lobbed offering. After Singh was run out, Reifer and Johnson joined forces to stage ‘operation rebuild' with what turned out to be a crucial 37-run stand from 39 balls.
Johnson was dropped by Carmichael, running to his left from long-on in the 10th over off Permaul, who saw the keeper put down a leg side catch off his bowling with the West Indies left-hander not yet into double figures.
The reintroduction of pace released the pressure and Johnson hammered Cordel Mars for two confident boundaries, while Reifer latched onto the expensive Mars with a couple of on-side boundaries and GCC seemed back on course. But Johnson's well compiled 27 came to an end when he pushed forward to Permaul, who troubled his fellow Test player, for Ford at short leg to hold the catch at 62-4.
Reifer, who lofted Jacobs for four remained to the end on 20 from 32 balls, while Mohamed (8) finished the contest with a boundary for four although it was hard work for GCC who faced 61 dot balls.