Palmer stars in Scorpions win
New Jamaica Scorpions captain Paul Palmer delivered his first telling performance of the season when he scored an unbeaten half-century to guide his team to a three-wicket win over the Leeward Islands Hurricanes in their fourth-round WICB First-Class Championship clash at Sabina Park yesterday.
The 23-year-old, whose highest score was 35 in six innings prior to this encounter, stroked a well-played 51, as the Scorpions, set a modest victory total of 150 late on the third day, got to their target at 150 for seven.
Scores: Hurricanes 164 and 228; Scorpions 243 and 150 for seven.
A pleased Palmer expressed relief at the end.
"It was a bit close in the end, but it's the game of cricket, and about who executes better under pressure, and we did that," he said.
Starting the day 112 for three and holding a 33-run lead, the Leewards were pegged back by ever-reliable spinner Nikita Miller.
Bowling with customary bounce and turn, man-of-the-match Miller picked up four for 71 for match figures of eight for 124. He had taken four for 53 in the first innings. Leg-spinner Damion Jacobs supported with three for 72.
Opener Shane Jeffers, who was 55 not out overnight, went on to score 61 to emerge as the Hurricanes' top batsman, while Orlando Peters made 52.
The Scorpions began their victory chase just before the tea break and were 29 for one at the break.
They collapsed after the break, losing wickets at regular intervals, and at one stage were struggling at 84 for five.
However, the left-handed Palmer, who grew in confidence as his innings progressed, hit six sweetly timed fours and kept his nerves to anchor his team home. He spent two hours and 32 minutes at the crease, and faced 127 balls. David Bernard made 36 and shared a crucial 57-run stand with Palmer for the sixth wicket.
Cornwall took four for 39 to also end the match with eight wickets. He took four for 76 in the Scorpions' first innings.
"We didn't take our half-chances, particularly in the first innings when we had them at one stage 69 for six, and in the end they cost us," Leewards captain Steve Liburd said.
The victory was Jamaica's third in a row after four matches, while, for the Leewards, it was their fourth defeat in as many games.
AT GRENADA NATIONAL STADIUM: Windward Island Volcanoes, chasing a winning target of 339, were 40 without loss at stumps.
Scores: BARBADOS PRIDE 296 (Kyle Corbin 68, Shamarh Brooks 51; Liam Sebastien 4-68, Dalton Polius 3-30) and 261 for 7 dec (Roston Chase 71, Shamarh Brooks 66; Shane Shillingford 3-76).
VOLCANOES 179 (Liam Sebastien 40; Alston Bobb 40; Kevin Stoute 4-30, Miguel Cummins 3-42) and 40 without loss.
AT QUEEN'S PARK OVAL: Trinidad and Tobago Red Force, trailing Guyana Jaguars by 214 runs, were 51 for two in their second innings at the end of the third day.
Scores: RED FORCE 210 (Uthman Muhammad 53, Marlon Richards 53; Chris Barnwell 5-32, Veerasammy Permaul 3-59) and 51-2.
JAGUARS 475 all out (Assad Fudadin 102, Leon Johnson 92, Shiv Chanderpaul 82, Christopher Barnwell 79; Yannick Ottley 3-17, Imran Khan 2-14).
Hurricanes second innings
C. Hughes lbw b Miller 27
S. Jeffers c Jacobs b Mindley 61
D. Cruickshank c Bernard b Jacobs 14
N. Bonner b Mindley 10
O. Peters run out 52
S. Liburd c Palmer b Miller 8
J. Hamilton c wk Baugh b Jacobs 2
R. Cornwall c wk Baugh b Jacobs 16
J. Taylor not out 24
G. Tonge c Campbell b Miller 6
A. Joseph lbw b Miller 0
Extras (b4,lb1,w1.nb2) 8
Total (all out, 91.4 overs) 228
Fall of wickets: 1-71,2-94,3-112,4-127,5-157,6-161,7-182,8-220,9-228.
Bowling: Cottrell 4-0-34-0, Mindley 12-8-18-2, Miller 43.5-12-71-5, Campbell 3-0-15-0, Lambert 3-0-13-0, Jacobs 26-2,72-3
Scorpions second innings
J. Campbell c Peters b Cornwall 15
P. Palmer not out 51
K. Edwards c Liburd b Cornwall 4
A. McCarthy C wk Hamilton b Cornwall 13
T. Lambert c Peters b Cornwall 6
C. Baugh run out 2
D. Bernard c Bonner b Cornwall 36
N. Miller run out 8
Damion Jacobs not out 1
Extras (b12,lb2) 14
Total (7 wkts, 40.5 overs) 150
Fall of wickets: 1-20,2-44,3-70-4-77,5-84,6-141,7-149
Bowling:Tonge 8-2-26-0, Joseph 3-0-17-0,Cornwall 15-3-39-5, Taylor 10-0-26-1, Hughes 4.5-0-28-0
Man-of-the-match: Nikita Miller
Umpires: Verdayne Smith, Nigel Duguid.