Sat | Dec 16, 2017

Miller returns for Scorpions in Leewards clash

Published:Thursday | November 16, 2017 | 12:00 AMJermaine Lannaman
Miller

Returning captain Nikita Miller believes it will be a tight contest when the Jamaica Scorpions face unbeaten Leeward Islands Hurricanes in the Regional Four-Day Championship at Warner Park in St Kitts and Nevis today.

The match-up will see the Jamaicans looking to spring from their current position of fifth in the six-team standings after stacking up two draws and a defeat in their opening three games of the season.

The Leewards, in the meantime, have had a positive start to their campaign, winning once and drawing twice.

"They are stronger now in terms of how they play, as they have far more experienced players,'' said Miller, who is set to make his first appearance this season after recovering from injury.

"They have a few players with West Indies and West Indies 'A' experience and English county experience, and have been playing for each.

"However, despite that, I believe we have more than what it takes to come out with more points than them in the encounter.''

The Scorpions, whose rain-affected match-up with Barbados at Sabina Park last weekend ended in draw, have made one change to their 13-man squad for the showdown.

 

HARRISON REPLACED

 

Miller has replaced fellow left-arm spinner Paul Harrison, who was a reserve against the Pride.

This means that the batting, spearheaded by West Indies 'A' opener, John Campbell, will have to produce better returns that they did against Barbados where they were bowled out for 176 in their first innings, and were tethering 98 for six in their second.

Campbell has had mediocre returns so far with scores of 44 and 10 having missed the first two matches due to West Indies 'A' duties.

He will be hoping for support from Brandon King and departing ad hoc captain Paul Palmer, whose composed 31 not out to go with his 12 not out in the first innings against the Pride ensured that Jamaica, who were at one stage 57 for four in their second innings with a hour to go on the final day, didn't crumble.

Others who have shown glimpses of their talent and will want up the ante are Guyanese-born Assad Fudadin, who has been less than impressive with scores of 39, 42, 18, 8, 18 and 10, and hard-hitting season debutant, opener Garth Garvey.

 

TAYLOR HOPING TO MAKE IMPACT

 

Batsman and part-time wicketkeeper, Steven Taylor, who made his first-class debut against the Pride, will also be hoping to produce more after scores of one and 10.

It is unknown, however, how the bowling of the Scorpions will pan out as with the return of Miller, and the availability of leg-spinner Damion Jacobs, the team's second highest wicket taker with eight wickets, left-arm unorthodox spinner Dennis Bulli, is likely to be dropped.

All-rounder Derval Green with 13 wickets is the team's most successful bowler thus far.

The remaining bowlers in the squad are fast bowlers Oshane Thomas and Reynard Leveridge, who made their seasonal debuts against the Pride. Guyanese-born opener Trevon Griffith rounds out the squad.

To be captained by burly off-spinner Rahkeem Cornwall, the Leewards includes fellow West Indies 'A' representatives, wicketkeeper Jahmar Hamilton and opener Monticin Hodge, Jamaican-born batsman Nkrumah Bonner, West Indies wicket-keeper, Devon Thomas.