By Neto Baptiste
Pigotts Crushers were crowned kings of Two Day cricket over the weekend following their drawn final against multiple times champions PIC Liberta Blackhawks in Pigotts.
Crushers dominated the contest from which they claimed first innings points when they won the toss and opted to bat. The decision by captain, Elroy Francis, proved a good one as Crushers amassed 285 all out in 60.1 overs.
Francis led his team’s charge with the bat, striking nine fours and three maximums for his 68 of 82 deliveries. He was assisted by Tris Phillip who made 64 off 72 with seven fours and three sixes. There were contributions also from T. Theophile and J. Drew with 49 and 47 runs respectively. Deran Benta contributed 33 from 69 deliveries.
Kofi James was the best on show with the ball for Blackhawks, claiming six wickets for 80 runs in 18 overs. Karima Gore snatched three for 60 in 18.1 overs.
Coach of the Pigotts Crushers, Ajarnie Frederick, said he backed his team to defend what he thought was a modest first innings total against the Blackhawks.
“Three hundred was our target at first, and I think that with the bowling line-up we have we were comfortable with where we were at when we got bowled out in the first innings. We are playing good cricket and you have to believe in yourselves because we were home so we were confident and we just had to back our ability and go with it. It’s all about being confident in whatever decision you make, whether to bowl or bat,” he said.
Blackhawks’ first innings reply was lackluster, to say the least, with Gore the only batsman showing resistance with 81 from 136 balls with six fours and one maximum as his team was restricted to 168 all out.
Quinton Boatswain and Theophile proved most difficult for the Blackhawks batsmen, each claiming five wickets. Boatswain picked up five for 29 in 14 overs while Theophile bagged five for 61 in 13.1 overs.
Batting for a second time, Crushers reached 182 for eight in 51 overs before the match was called a draw. J. Grant hit a top score of 44 with assistance coming from Drew who made 28 and Benda with 25.
J. Benjamin, K. Greenaway and Gore each had two wickets for Blackhawks.
President of the Antigua and Barbuda Cricket Association, Leon Rodney, congratulated Pigotts Crushers on their triumph, adding that the season went well.
“Obviously, it’s not without a few hiccups here and there, and there is no secret that we had some teams who didn’t turn out for matches and we spoke about that already saying that we will find a way to try and get that fixed, but we just want to say that it was, once again, a reasonably good season for the ABCA and the players. It was a very good final and I thing that even in the first innings it was a kind of see-saw battle until when Pigotts really took the upper hand,” he said. The results also mean that Crushers ended their run in the Antigua and Barbuda Cricket Association’s Two Day Championships unbeaten.