A BIZARRE second innings declaration by Leeward Islands Hurricanes captured the headlines and overshadowed a brilliant spell from Jamaica Scorpions pacer Nicholson Gordon in the West Indies Championship on Friday.
The Hurricanes, trailing by 101 on first innings, declared their second innings on 83 for two about 40 minutes after lunch on the second day of their rescheduled fourth round match at the Vivian Richards Cricket Ground, thus conceding defeat and handing Barbados Pride an innings and 18 runs victory.
More importantly, Hurricanes’ bid to hold onto second place in the Championship failed, as the result moved the Pride into that position on 134.2 points, a mere 0.2 more than their hosts, who will secure third place, regardless of the outcome in the other match which is taking place.
In that game, Gordon followed up his destruction of Red Force top-order’s batting the previous day by leading the demolition of the bottom half, finishing with career-best figures, before Scorpions’ stayed in contention with defiant batting before stumps were drawn on the second day of their rescheduled first round match at the Brian Lara Cricket Academy in Trinidad.
Opener Montcin Hodge was not out on 40, carrying his aggregate for the season to 711 and second only to the 745 of veteran Windward Islands Volcanoes left-hander opener Devon Smith. Akeem Saunders was not out on five when the decision to declare was taken.
The Hurricanes had lost Keacy Carty caught at second slip off Marquino Mindley for four in the second over, and almost an hour later, Devon Thomas was caught at first slip off Keon Harding for 21 and were probably looking to rebuild before their bizarre decision.
Earlier, starting the day on 154 for four, Pride declared their first innings after the first 45 minutes’ play.
Captain Shamarh Brooks finished with the top score of 82, after resuming on 79, and overnight partner, Windies wicketkeeper/batsman Shane Dowrich, was dismissed without adding to his overnight 28.
Keon Harding made 21 and was only one of the remaining batsmen that got into double figures.
Windies fast bowler Alzarri Joseph ended with 4-28 from 12.5 overs and his captain, champion off-spinner Rahkeem Cornwall, finished with 3-86 to end with a Championship-high 54 wickets.