Scorpions lack sting - Miller puzzled as Jamaica franchise crash to yet another defeat
Jamaica Scorpions are now officially out of the running for the WICB Regional Four-Day Championship title after going down to a six-wicket defeat to Barbados Pride at Sabina Park yesterday.
The Junior Bennett-coached unit, who entered the eighth-round encounter with a mere mathematical chance of overtaking leaders Guyana Jaguars, succumbed to their fourth straight loss following another poor batting display.
Resuming the day on 22 for two, 18 runs behind the Pride's first innings total of 217, Jamaica were bowled out for 157 on the stroke of lunch on the third day.
This set the Kraigg Brathwaite-led Pride a victory target of 118, which they achieved at 118 for four shortly before tea.
The result kept Barbados in second place with two rounds of matches remaining.
"It's very disappointing. You get 10 wickets in a game and you can't celebrate," stated former Jamaica vice-captain Nikita Miller, who finished with figures of eight for 67 and two for 38.
STRUGGLING FOR RUNS
"We are just struggling in terms of getting runs. The pitch played well and was a good track to bat on.
"We just needed to back ourselves some more and find a way, and that did not happen," he added.
Last champions four years ago, Jamaica went into the clash with three wins and four defeats.
This was largely based on below par batting totals of under 200 per innings.
The Wavell Hinds-chaired selection panel has since chopped and changed several players, including Tamar Lambert, David Bernard Jr, and Carlton Baugh Jr, in an attempt to arrest the situation.
For the Barbados matchup, the panel left out the injured Jermaine Blackwood from the 13-man squad and brought in young Guyanese-born opener Trevon Griffith, who did not feature.
This resulted in young batsman Brandon King, who was 12th man the previous game, being given the opportunity to prove his worth after misfiring in the opening two matches.
King, however, could only manage 19 and 25.
Captain and opener John Campbell, who, after scoring his maiden first-class ton last season, has failed to pass 50 this season and was dismissed for scores of four and 20, respectively, in this contest.
His opening partner Shacaya Thomas, after making his seasonal debut with 62 and 19 in the previous match, made 50 and five.
Sidelined West Indies batsman Kirk Edwards scored four and two in the respective innings.
Andre McCarthy, the team's top runs scorer this season, hit 52 and 18, while recalled wicketkeeper Chadwick Walton, batting at number six, made nine and one.
Former Leewards wicketkeeper-batsman Devon Thomas, who now plays as a batting all-rounder while bowling medium pace, contributed 18 and 44 not out.
"I can't say what is the problem as we have tried everything in the practice nets, including batting a lot of balls," continued Miller.
"No matter the personnel we use, it is the same outcome.
"The team environment," he added, "is also pretty good, decent and normal, and that's why it is a bit puzzling to me."
Meanwhile, Brathwaite, in commending the effort of his team, said an all-round effort made the difference.
"We built pressure with a lot dot balls and I think that is how we got wickets," he said
"Our batsmen also did a fine job in the second innings to chase the winning runs as batting was not that easy with Nikita Miller opening the bowling."
SCORPIONS 1st Innings 177
PRIDE 1st Innings 217
SCORPIONS 2nd Innings
(overnight 22 for two)
S Thomas c Brathwaite b Warrican 5
*J Campbell c wkp Dowrich b Chase 20
K Edwards c Chase b Warrican 2
A McCarthy c Cummins b Warrican 18
B King c Brathwaite b Walsh 25
+C Walton st Dowrich b Walsh 1
D Thomas not out 44
D Jacobs c Brooks b Walsh 0
J Dawes lbw b Cummins 29
N Miller c and b Cummins 3
N Gordon run out 0
Extras (b6, lb1, nb3) 10
TOTAL (all out, 49.2 overs) 157
Fall of wickets: 1-6, 2-10, 3-38, 4-73, 5-75, 6-78, 7-80, 8-143, 9-149, 10-157.
Bowling: Warrican 14-2-49-3, Cummins 8.2-2-20-2 (nb3), Chase 11-1-29-1, Greaves 3-1-11-0, Walsh 13-1-41-3.
PRIDE 2nd Innings (target: 118 runs)
*K Brathwaite c D. Thomas b Jacobs 36
O Phillips c McCarthy b Miller 8
J Carter c Campbell b Miller 32
S Brooks c S. Thomas b Jacobs 3
R Chase not out 35
+S Dowrich not out 1
Extras (nb3) 3
TOTAL (4 wkts, 31.2 overs) 118
Fall of wickets: 1-17, 2-77, 3-79, 4-116.
Bowling: Miller 15.2-4-38-2, McCarthy 3-0-16-0, Campbell 3-0-19-0, Dawes 3-0-16-0, Jacobs 7-3-29-2.
Result: Pride won by six wickets.
Points: Pride 16, Scorpions 3.
Man-of-the-Match: Roston Chase.
Umpires: Christopher Wright, Nigel Duguid.