Batting let us down – Johnson

Taken from Guyana Times

By Rajiv Bisnauth

National Coach, Alvin Johnson

National Manager, Alvin Johnson

Guyana finished in cellar position in this year’s West Indies Cricket Board’s Regional Four-Day tournament and team manager Alvin Johnson laid the blame for Guyana’s poor display squarely at the feet of the batsmen.
The Guyanese failed to win a single game, ending on 29 points. They  suffered defeats at the hands of Jamaica, Barbados, Combined Campuses & Colleges and the Leeward Islands.
“Our batting let us down. Our bowling and fielding improved as the tournament went on, but collectively as a batting unit we didn’t do well,” Johnson explained.

He added: “Apart from Leon Johnson, the other senior batsmen failed tremendously, it was evident that the batsmen lacked concentration, hence the consistency wasn’t there”.
Johnson further revealed that had the batsmen expressed a little more confidence in their own abilities, the situation could have been different.
Guyana’s captain Leon Johnson was by far Guyana’s best batsman on show, displaying a high level of consistency – something that had eluded him over the past 10 years at the regional level.

Guyana Captain, leon Johnson

Guyana Captain, leon Johnson

The former West Indies Under-19 skipper played only three games and ended the preliminary phase of the competition with 295 runs at an average of 59.00, scoring one hundred and a half-century in the process.
Wicket- keeper Anthony Bramble was Guyana’s next best batsman with 286 runs, while Assad Fudadin (273) was the other Guyanese batsmen to pass 250 runs in the tournament.
Tagenarine Chanderpaul (195), Christopher Barnwell (154), Vishual Singh (113), Devendra Bishoo (112) and Zaheer Mohamed (103) were the other batsmen to pass one hundred or more runs.
To compound their woes, their most senior batsman, Shivnarine Chanderpaul, played only two matches before he decided to play in the English County championships, while Ramnaresh Sarwan failed to recover from his back injury.
Test batsman Narsingh Deonarine, their third most experienced player, was  dropped after four games.
In contrast, Johnson praised the bowlers for their decent performances, adding that the bowlers were outstanding throughout.
Left-arm spinner Veerasammy Permaul led the wicket tally with 29 scalps,  followed by leg spinner Devendra Bishoo  with 28 wickets; 15 of those wickets from the last game against Trinidad and Tobago.
Bishoo crowned a sensational comeback after being dropped for the fifth- round game. He wrote his name into the records of regional cricket by capturing 9-78 in the first innings, the best figures ever by a Guyanese at this level and then grabbed 6-71 in the second innings.
He trails Barbados’s Ryan Hinds (15-102), St Kitts’ Deryck Parry (15-101) and Trinidad’s Rajendra Dhanraj (16-167), who were the other bowlers to achieve the feat of 15 wickets or more in a regional first-class game.
Fast bowler Keon Joseph, who bowled consistently throughout was the other bowler with more than 10 wickets. He captured 14 wickets from five games.
Barbados have been crowned the Regional four-day league champions, retaining the title they won last year, and will receive the WICB President’s Trophy. It is Barbados’s 22nd regional first-class title.
Barbados, Trinidad & Tobago,the Windward Islands and Jamaica have qualified for the semi-finals and will now clash for the George Headley/Everton Weeks trophy, with Barbados playing Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago going up against the Windward Islands. Both games will be played simultaneously from April 19.