Barbados Pride upstage Trinidad Red Force
BRIDGETOWN, Barbados (CMC):
Rookie Shai Hope finally delivered on his immense promise, stroking his maiden regional first-class hundred to put Barbados Pride in a strong position to beat Trinidad and Tobago Red Force in their sixth-round WICB Professional Cricket League contest.
The right-handed Hope finished unbeaten on 111, an innings that propelled the hosts to 278 for five declared, on the third day at Kensington Oval on Sunday.
Carlos Brathwaite smashed an entertaining unbeaten 59, Roston Chase got 46, while Kirk Edwards scored 24.
Leg-spinner Imran Khan picked up two for 64.
At the close, Red Force were 17 without loss in pursuit of 336 for victory, with Monday's final day looming.
Resuming at their overnight 15 without loss, Barbados slumped to 57 for three in the second hour.
Kyle Corbin failed to add to his overnight four, bowled off stump by fast bowler Shannon Gabriel at 17 for one in the day's fourth over.
In the next over, with no runs added, captain Kraigg Brathwaite was taken behind driving at seamer Marlon Richards for seven, and Kirk Edwards' run of poor form continued when he was stumped off Imran Khan at 57 for three.
Hope then came to his side's rescue in an innings that spanned a shade under five hours, lasted 221 balls and included eight fours and two sixes.
He shared two three significant partnerships that hurt Red Force. He added 88 for the fourth wicket with Chase, who hit four fours and a six off 97 balls in nearly two hours at the crease, and then put on a further 45 for the next wicket with Shane Dowrich, who made 19.
However, it was the 88-run, unbroken sixth-wicket stand between Hope and the aggressive Brathwaite that deflated Red Force.
Brathwaite faced just 61 balls, crunching three fours and five sixes, to dominate the partnership.
He reached his fifth first-class half-century with two successive sixes.