Opening batsman Rajendra Chandrika and leg-spinner Devendra Bishoo have both been cleared to play for Guyana Jaguars in this weekend’s restart of the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) Professional Cricket League (PCL) Four-day competition.
Head Coach Esaun Crandon on Tuesday confirmed that the two West Indies cricketers, who picked up injuries during the Caribbean’s side tour to Australia late last year, have fully recovered and will feature in the squad against the twin-islanders.
Chandrika and Bishoo were part of the Guyana Jaguars’ three-day, warm-up game last week at the Georgetown Cricket Club, Bourda, and both turned in solid performances in their first match since that Australia series.
Chandrika, the elegant right-hander, stroked a fine 86 on the first day of the match, and shared a 192-run, second wicket partnership with left-hander Assad Fudadin, who warmed up with a classy 145. Bishoo was also productive with the ball, claiming 4-33.
While Crandon welcomed the return of the two players, he pointed out that all-rounders Christopher Barnwell and Steven Jacobs will miss this upcoming round due to injuries.
The Head Coach believes the Guyana Jaguars have prepared well, and should continue with the momentum from the first half of the tournament, when they chalked up five wins from as many games.
Crandon described the three-day, warm-up game as “purposeful”, noting that the batsmen spent valuable time in the middle, while the bowlers “did well.”
“We had three productive days of cricket, and over the next few days we will continue to intensify our preparations ahead of the match against Trinidad,” Crandon related.
Guyana Jaguars are leading the points table after a flawless record in the first five matches, winning all by comprehensive margins. They currently sit on 85 points, 22 more than second place Barbados Pride.
Jamaica Scorpions are third on 53 points, followed by Trinidad and Tobago Red Force (37), Windward Islands Volcanoes (29) and Leeward Islands Hurricanes (13).
Playing their first three matches at home, the Guyana Jaguars defeated Windward Islands Volcanoes by 104 runs, Leeward Islands Hurricanes by an innings and 35 runs, and Barbados Pride by nine wickets. In the two away matches to close off the first half of the tournament, the Leon Johnson-led team whipped Trinidad and Tobago Red Force by an innings and 49 runs, and Jamaica Scorpions by 117 runs.
After being knocked out at the semi-finals of the NAGICO Super50 in January, Crandon said he would urge his players to “refocus and regroup” as they head into the final phase of the Four-day competition, fully energised for the task at hand.
With a perfect slate of five victories from five games, the Guyana Jaguars are primed to repeat as champions, after they took championship honours in the 2014/2015 season with a performance of a similar nature.
So far this season, newcomer left-arm spinner Gudakesh Motie has been the standout performer, finishing the first half as the leading wicket-taker with 34 wickets from five games.
Left-hander Vishaul Singh, with 421 runs at an average of 60.14 with two hundreds, is the Guyana Jaguars’ leading runscorer and the competition’s second highest run-getter behind Roston Chase (436) of Barbados Pride.
(Taken from Guyana Times)