It was another episode of total dominance at the National Stadium, Providence, when Guyana Jaguars defeated Windward Islands Volcanoes, by eight wickets on day four. Jaguars recorded their fourth victory in as many rounds, with Keemo Paul starring with the ball, ending with career-best match figures: 10 wickets, 129 runs after bowling 35 overs in both innings.
With a small target of 117 required for victory, the big Berbician, Shimron Hetmyer thrilled the supporters at Providence playing flourishing shots during his volatile 61 from 28 balls, including five maximums. Hetmyer hit sixes into the media centre, into the grass mound, the red stand and the cheerful green stand.
Earlier in the day, Volcanoes Captain Kirk Edwards reached his 10th First-Class century to lead the visitors’ fightback at Providence. Edwards’ 139 took his team to 361 all out with wicketkeeper Denis Smith playing a fighting knock of 67, which ensured Volcanoes a lead of 116.
The final-day proceedings of the fourth round between Guyana Jaguars and Windward Islands Volcanoes began with Paul bowling to Edwards. Volcanoes resumed the day on 167-3, under perfect weather, at the National Stadium. Edwards scored the first run of the day when he worked a Paul delivery into the leg side, at mid-on, where Veerasammy Permaul gave a sharp return.
Kaveem Hodge watched his captain, Edwards show the bowler the maker’s name, hitting the first boundary of the morning when he stroked Paul down the ground for four. Volcanoes had the intention of erasing the 78-run deficit; Edwards reached his half-century in the process as the 200-run came up when Edwards stroked Permaul for fours in the 68th over. Jaguars spinners remained patient, and Gudakesh Motie got the first wicket of the morning, removing a struggling Hodge, who faced 77 balls for his 12 runs. He was out caught by Bramble, who got his fourth catch in the second innings.
Volcanoes were 202-4 as Edwards dominated the 64-run partnership, that Hodge featured in. The left-arm spinner, Motie, who hails from Albion, bowled in the right areas and six runs later, he was rewarded with another wicket –Alick Athanaze’s. Motie trapped Athanaze in front as the Dominican went without scoring.
At 208-5, Denis Smith partnered Edwards and the pair continued to rebuild the Volcanoes innings. Edwards, who looked solid in his stroke-play brought up his century in fine fashion, hitting Motie for a huge six down the ground to reach his 10th First-Class century. Edwards removed his helmet and soaked in his teammate’s applause, reaching the milestone in 156 minutes from 162 balls, hitting twelve fours and two sixes.
The Volcanoes accumulated a lead, but in the process they lost a few wickets in the morning session. Edwards continued to dominate the partnership; at one stage hitting a hat trick of boundaries off Shepherd. Paul struck once more, removing Edwards at 291-6, after 90.2 overs. Edwards was trapped in front by a lively delivery after scoring a well-played 139 from 187 balls, finishing with 20 fours and two sixes.
Jaguars were in for a good lunch, having removed Edwards before the interval, with Volcanoes leading by 54 runs with some 41 overs remaining in two sessions. At lunch, Volcanoes were 299-6 with Denis Smith on 24 while Sherman Lewis was yet to score.
Paul resumed the afternoon session for the Jaguars from the southern end, with Lewis and Denis Smith were in search of quick runs. In the 93rd over of Volcanoes’ second Innings, the 300th run came up; at this stage, every run was vital. Paul got his third victim in Lewis who was bowled all ends up with the score on 314-7. Six runs later, Paul captured his maiden 10-wicket match haul, removing Ray Jordan, who was brilliantly caught at first-slip by Griffith, for three.
Wicketkeeper-batsman, Denis Smith watched his partners fall from the non-strikers end; at 321-9, Josh Thomas became Permaul’s first second innings victim, when he was trapped in front without scoring. With the final Volcanoes batsman in Larry Edwards entering the batting crease, Smith upped his scoring rate, reaching his half-century. The nephew of Devon Smith, Denis Smith, hit Paul for three consecutive boundaries. The lead piled up, Paul was taken off the attack and the final-wicket partnership frustrated the Jaguars.
Captain Leon Johnson made several bowling changes, since batting had become easy for Volcanoes’ final batting pair. They went past the 100-run lead, but Motie’s brilliance at mid-off saw Smith run out for a well-played 67 from 96 balls, including eight fours. The innings came to an end with Volcanoes 361 all out, accumulating a lead of 116 runs.
Paul ended with 4-72 from 18 overs in the second innings with four testing maidens. Motie had two wickets while Permaul, Sherfane Rutherford and Romario Shepherd had one wicket each.
Jaguars were once more edging closer to another victory, requiring 117 runs to win with 38 overs minimum. Openers Tagenarine Chanderpaul and Trevon Griffith made their way to bat under brilliant sunshine, with Lewis and Thomas starting proceedings for the Volcanoes. Two slips and a gully, Lewis bowled to Griffith and the Jaguars scoring account opened with a leg bye.
Griffith, who is known for his aggressive stroke play, chipped down the track to Lewis and hit him over mid-on for four, to open his scoring account. Chanderpaul played a late cut between second slip, to score a streaky boundary. Runs continued to flow for the Jaguars, but after 7.3 overs, Griffith went leg-side on a straight ball and was bowled behind his back for a run-a-ball 12 that included two fours. At tea, Jaguars were 35-1 with Chanderpaul on 16 and Hetmyer on 02, after eight overs. Chanderpaul continued his solid defence while Hetmyer came in and lit up Providence with some scintillating strokes.
Jaguars were scoring at a brisk rate, with the explosive Hetmyer at the batting crease, Volcanoes bowlers leaked runs. Hetmyer hit sixes at will, hitting Josh off the bowling in the 14th over. That over was a runs-fest with 25 runs conceded, with three no-balls bowled, Thomas was penalised, and taken off the bowling. Hetmyer reached his 11th First-Class half century from 25 balls with a sweet cut shot.
Three balls later, after reaching his milestone, he played one shot too many, hitting Hodge to long-on who was brilliantly taken by a running Lewis, and was dismissed for a well-played 61 from 28 balls that included five fours and five sixes. But the damage was already done, with the Hetmyer-Chanderpaul partnership worth 79 runs, with the score on 111-2 after 16.1 overs.
Johnson partnered Chanderpaul, and after the Jaguars Captain mistimed a few balls, he sealed the match with a six, into the lively green stands off a Hodge delivery. Jaguars clinched the match by eight wickets chasing 117 in 18.3 overs. Chanderpaul was left unbeaten in both innings, scoring 24 from 66 balls with three fours to his name.
Thomas and Hodge were the Volcanoes wicket-takers in the second innings with one wicket each. Anthony Bramble, who scored a magnificent century in the first innings and effected six dismissals, was awarded player of the match. Guyana Jaguars will play Leeward Islands Hurricanes in the fifth round that will commence from Thursday January 13-Sunday January 20, 2019.