Thomas: We need early wickets
Enterprising wicketkeeper batsman Aldaine Thomas believes the three-day game between England Lions and Jamaica XI at Sabina Park is evenly poised and come today's final day, the local players intend to try and make early inroads.
At close of play yesterday, on day two of the encounter, England closed on 80 for three in their second innings. This is to go with 263 for eight declared they made during their first time at bat.
Jamaica, in their first innings, and on the back of a shot-filled 109 from Thomas, made 236 in their first innings.
''Right now, it's a balanced game, and it can go either way,'' expressed Thomas, whose century was decorated with 10 fours and two sixes.
''We just need to go out there, get a few early wickets, and put the pressure on the England batsmen, and then take it from there,'' he added.
The 23-year-old Thomas, who has represented national team in five first-class matches to date, started slowly during his innings, but grew in confidence as it unfolded.
He started the day as the replacement batsman after opener Kennar Lewis was dismissed for 22 off the last ball on day one, and along with captain, Paul Palmer, went about trying to correct their overnight total of 36 for four.
However, after failing to settle, Palmer departed for 16, leaving Thomas with the arduous task of batting with the middle to lower order batsmen.
It was, however, a challenge, which he accepted and mixing sound judgement and solid defence he was able to rally his team.
His partners on his way to his century included fast bowler Gordon Bryan 29, leg-spinner Damion Jacobs, 13, and off-spinner Jamie Merchant, eight.
Fast bowler Toby Roland-Jones, who has played four Tests, three for 37 and opening ball partner Jamie Porter, three for 34, were the Lions' leading bowlers.
''I believe my innings was a good one,'' said Thomas. "The ball was swinging, I had to leave alone a lot, and that was the key."