West Indies emerge Plate champions
Posted by Prabin the सोभित on मंगलवार, मार्च 4, 2008
In what seemed a complete mismatch, West Indies overpowered Nepal to win their first ever Plate Championship by seven wickets to close out their campaign in the U/19 Cricket World Cup on a high note here at the Bayuemas Oval on Saturday.
A four-hour rain delay saw the final reduced to 27 overs from the mandatory 50 as West Indies and Nepal had enough time to somewhat familiarize themselves with the Bayuemas Oval, both teams coming here for the first time.
A dormant Nepal side were still finding their feet when the West Indies came at them at all guns blazing with both seam bowlers Jason Dawes (4-18) and Delorn Johnson (1-9) picking up four quick wickets as Nepal struggled to cope with their pace.
Dawes’ short-pitched deliveries had the Nepalese batsmen ducking and dodging while his good length deliveries earned him three top order scalps.
“It was a nice wicket to bowl on because of the bounce. I may have got four wickets but I could have got more had I not got carried away with the pace and bounce it provided,” said Man of the match, Dawes.
The West Indies were aware of Nepal captain Paras Khadka’s batting ability and it was his wicket they were looking for. Khadka looked very confident coming in two-down and that too, in only the third over. With neither seamers getting the prized scalp, a change in tactics was employed. A slower Darren Bravo (3-9) was introduced and a first-ball drive attempt only saw a thickest edge carry to Kieran Powell in the slips much to the delight of Bravo.
There was more joy to come for Bravo as he soon took two more wickets as Nepal were staggering at 53 for seven.
“Coming into the Plate finals, we obviously took the game very seriously and I was actually surprised that Nepal chose to bat on such a good bowling track, one that provided us with a lot of bounce”, said West Indian coach Larry Gomes.
Nepal were soon put out of their misery halfway though the 26th over as they were bowled out for a paltry 74.
The West Indies batsmen hit the ground running with Powell (24) choosing the aerial route more often than not. In Nepal’s second over, Khadka’s first, saw Powell clobber one four and a colossal six that went over mid-wicket; 16 runs came off that over.
Although there was no real contest in reaching the target, the West Indies lost three wickets. The runs came in full flow once the spinners were introduced and the game was soon closed out in the 15th over with Bravo (24 not out) finishing off the game with two consecutive boundaries.
“We are disappointed that we did not have that extra edge to finish things off,” said Khadka.
The West Indies are now placed ninth after winning the Plate and Nepal, champions in 2006, are in 10th position.