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Female WI cricket tournament: Barbados, Windward Islands record victories as T20 Blaze commences

By Timothy Jaikarran

Despite the rain on Tuesday, beautiful sunshine graced the Providence Stadium as Cricket West Indies’ T20 Blaze commenced. Notable wins were recorded by Barbados and the Windward Islands as major highlights of the day.

Windward Islands (green) made it across the line in the nick of time

The rivalry continues
The big match of the day was the Guyana versus Barbados match, with the home team playing against the defending champions. The match did not disappoint, as the two teams went after each other like raging bulls that have locked horns. With the few fans at the venue vociferously backing the home side, the Bajan dugout cheered their side with much gusto.
Batting first, the Bajans were dismissed for 86 in 19.2 overs. The Guyanese were able to prevent the Bajans from setting a huge total. Hayley Matthews was the standout Bajan player with 35, no other player could render Matthews any support, as the Guyanese made full use of their home advantage against the defending champions.

Cherry Ann Fraser is flooded by her team mates as she bagged 3-11

Bowling for Guyana, Cherry Ann Fraser returned figures of 3-11, Ashmini Munisar’s figures were 2-11, Mandy Mangru’s were 2-13, Kaysia Shultz produced figures of 2-7, and Shenetta Grimmond took 1-8.
Heading into the chase, the home team needed 87 off 120 balls for victory, but things didn’t quite work out the way Guyana wanted it. They lost Katana Mentore for 4, and shortly after, Mandy Mangru injured herself while running, and retired not out on zero. Shabika Gajnabi and Shemaine Campbelle held things together with a 45-run partnership, but Gajnabi found herself in the pavilion for 14.

Leeward Islands made their opponents work hard for their runs

The score moved from 54-2 to 79-9 as Guyana lost seven wickets for a mere 25 runs. Campbelle was the top scorer with 33, while in the bowling department Shakera Selman bagged 3-26, Aaliyah Alleyne 3-18, Shanika Bruce 1-15, and Hayley Matthews, with an economical spell, produced 1-7 from her four overs.

The see-saw encounter
In the first game of the day, the Windward Islands battled the Leeward Islands, and the action was spectacular from the first ball bowled. The Leeward Islands unit lost their first wicket without a run on the board, and, to make matters worse, they soon found themselves reeling at 24-3 as their opponents brought on the heat.

Mandy Mangru was taken off the field

However, as the wickets tumbled and the runs dried up, the Leeward Islands unit were forced on the back foot, and a T20 encounter soon became a Test match encounter as the Leeward Islands’ only hope was to ‘block out’ the rest of the deliveries and see how many runs they could add to their tally. In the end, they were restricted to 56-7 in their allotted 20 overs.
Rosalie Dolabaille was the top scorer with 21 off 46 deliveries. Bowling for the Windward Islands, Pearl Etienne took 2-8, Jannillea Glasgow took 1-6 and Afy Fletcher took 1-4.

The victorious Barbados

Many had expected the small total to be chased with ease, but the Leeward Islands ladies turned on the heat and applied the pressure early. Windward Islands soon found themselves from 10-1 to 27-3 at one point of the game it, and it looked as though the Leeward Islands had it in the bag. However, a few wides and no balls cost them some valuable runs despite the constant loss of Windward Islands’ wickets. The Windward Island ladies allowed their opponents to draw out the game, as they made a target of 57 runs seem as though they had to climb Mount Everest.
When the sixth wicket fell, the Leeward Islands celebrated, but it was a little too late, as the Windward Islands closed out the game, winning by 4 wickets. Windward Islands ended on 57-6 in 17.1 overs.