In bright sunshine at the Guyana National Stadium, Providence, the United States of America Cricket Academy (USACA) Under-18 side lost by two wickets to the Guyana Under-17 team when the USACA tour to Guyana continued yesterday on the East Bank of Demerara.
A responsible 82-run second wicket partnership between Gauranshu Sharma (36) and Kushal Ganji (33) rallied the North Americans to 149 all out in 48.3 overs as the spinners, as expected, dominated proceedings.
Off-spinners Sagar Hatherarami (3-33), Kevin Sinclair (2-15) and left-arm spinner Ashmead Nedd (2-15) did the damage with the ball after off-spinner Richie Looknauth, whose action looks a bit suspect, opened the bowling for Guyana and had 0-11 from 10 miserly overs.
Guyana reached 150-8 from 46.4 overs, Raymond Perez leading the way with 42 and Adrian Sukwah making 35. Off-spinner Rafeek Nazeer had 3-26 and Jash Patel 2-19 for the USAunit in a losing cause, the local side avenging their loss to the tourist’s in their first game.
On a slow and low track, the Americans opted to bat on an outfield still showing the effects of Sunday’s football contest between Guyana’s Golden Jaguars and Grenada’s Spice Boyz. The tourists were off to a horrendous start when Sagar Patel was run out for a duck with just a single on the board.
Sharma and Ganji tried to repair the early damage with a solid but laborious partnership that was exciting as watching paint dry. Watched by a handful of spectators, mostly friends and relatives of the players, the second wicket pair struggled to get the ball off the square as Nedd and Hetarami kept the shackles on the Americans with frugal spells.
The batsmen were made to work hard for their runs with Ganji, who reached the boundary four times, being the slightly more aggressive of the two batsmen. However, with the score on 83 in the 30th over, Ganji was caught and bowled by Nedd for a painstaking 33 while seven runs later, Guyanese Derick Narine, who scored a fluent 56 against Berbice Under-18s at Port Mourant on Monday, was bowled by Hetarami for one. When Nedd removed Sharma for 36 with just two fours in the 33rd over, the USA side was 92-4.
Without addition to the score, Chetram Persaud was LBW to Hetarami for on; despite a fighting 17 from Nandan Polisetty, who added 62 with Narine in Berbice on Monday, 14 from Jash Petal and an aggressive 12 with two fours from Nazeer the visitors were bowled out with nine balls left in the innings.
When the Guyana U-17s began their reply Perez and Joshua Persaud provided a good platform for the team to build on before Nazeer got rid of Persaud (15) at 36-1 before Shail Patel removed Baskar Yadram (2) at 50-2.
It was soon 69-3 when Perez who played some positive shots before falling eight short of only the second fifty in the Under-18 competition, when he was removed by Persaud. Nazeer sent back Ramnarine Chatura (14) and Renaldo Ali Mohamed (4) as Guyana slipped to 105-5. Only Sukwah of the remaining batsmen was up to the task of scoring freely on the sluggish pitch which made shot-making a difficult task.
The right-hander got little assistance for the remaining batsman but after he fell to Jash Patel, Nedd (4*) and Looknauth (7*) who finished the contest with a boundary with 20 balls to spare, saw Guyana to a well earned win.
In the other matches yesterday the USA Under-15s lost by 77 runs to the Berbice Under-19s at Everest. Berbice made 187 and bowled out the Americans for 110 despite Kishan Dass’ 49 while the Under-13 game against GYO was washed out.
The series continues today with three more matches. The USA U-18s battle West Demerara U-18s in a 50-over contest at Wales from 09:30hrs, their U-15s face-off with Demerara U-15 at DCC in a 40-over game which starts at 11:00hrs and the U-13s oppose East Coast U-13s in a 35-over at Ogle from 11:00hrs.
(Taken from Kaieteur News)