By Neto Baptiste
President of the Liberta Sports Club and coach of the PIC Liberta Blackhawks cricket team, Kenneth Benjamin, has commended his young squad for their spirited performance thus far in this year’s State Insurance Corporation Super 40 competition but believes they have gone as far as they can and will go this year.
On 16 points from eight matches, Blackhawks cannot get into the top four even with a victory in their final preliminary round match against Combined Schools on Saturday.
Benjamin, speaking on the Good Morning Jojo Sports Show, was blunt when he said the team’s dominance in local cricket has come to an end.
“I don’t know about any outside chance. Twelve years of dominance has come to an end and we have enjoyed the 12 years but I can’t see Liberta qualifying. I heard Kenny [Lewis] taking about the outside chance and I can’t see it because Empire has 20 points and they beat us so there is no way we are going to qualify in front of Empire. We can’t catch Jennings nor Bethesda and All Saints is on 20 [points] and also you have New Winthorpes who will play against Pigotts so I really don’t see the Blackhawks qualifying,” he said.
Despite the team’s slim to no chance of advancing to the next round, Benjamin expects his players to do well in the contest scheduled for the Pigotts playing field.
“At the end of the day you still want good performances, and it doesn’t matter the results so not because we can’t qualify means we’re going turn up and say we can’t qualify. It is the same as Bethesda who are in a very strong position but that shouldn’t give them any reasons to turn out and play guys who are just learning the game and maybe All Saints will run over them so it is important still because we have youngsters, Combined Schools are all school boys, so it would be nice for our boys to turn out and really do well against their peers,” he said.
CUB Bethesda Golden Eagles, unbeaten after eight rounds of matches with their only blemish being an abandoned fixture against Jennings, sits atop the standings with 32 points and are, to date, the only team confirmed for the semis.
Jennings, in second with 22 points, could ease into the next round with a victory over their struggling neighbours, Bolans Blasters, who are yet to win a match in the competition.
The other two available slots could be divided between New Winthorpes Lions, All Saints Pythons and Anderson Carty Empire Nation who all have 20 points.
In other match-ups, All Saints Pythons face Bethesda Golden Eagles in Bethesda and Pigotts travel to New Winthorpes where they will face the Lions.