Cunaripo crush St Mary’s for Atlantic title
Trinidad & Tobago Newsday article.
PORT OF SPAIN, TRINIDAD - Cunaripo Government thumped St Mary’s Government by ten wickets on Friday night to stay unbeaten in the Atlantic National Primary Schools Cricket Competition and clinch the coveted boys title at the Queen’s Park Oval, Port-of-Spain.
It was one of the most one-sided finals in the tournament which was testament to the quality of a well-drilled and disciplined Cunaripo team who celebrated their win with a memorable victory lap around the Oval with their coach Deochand Mohabir and supporters.
For almost all the boys, it was their first time playing on the pristine Oval surface and with their fans cheering them on loudly, were keen to end their season on a high.
But after bowling out their rivals for just 70 runs, Cunaripo captain Andy Mahase and fellow opener Tishan Ramroop batted with great purpose to knock off the runs with nine overs still to go.
Ramroop top scored with an unbeaten 25 while Mahase had 13 not out. St Mary’s after being dismissed cheaply, failed to impose any pressure on their opponents with a proliferation of wides, they dented any chance they had of rattling the nerves of the opposing batsmen.
Batting first, St Mary’s Teshorne Ragoo was run out in the first over without a run on the board as Cunaripo struck early. Pacer Dillon Partap then dismissed Jeremy Steeling as St Mary’s slipped to 10 for two.
Opener Joshua Edwards was fortunate to be dropped at silly mid-off but stayed positive and swept the off-spinning Mahase for a boundary. On 17 though, Edwards fell to Mahase who began to take control of the match. He bowled Aaron Rodney with a ball that spun in to leave St Mary’s reeling at 30 for four.
Wickets continued to fall with Mc Leod next dismissed before Kevin Steeling and Keston Cutless were run out to make it 38 for seven. There was a mini-revival but Ameer Ali put an end to it - 61/8. The final two wickets fell soon after as Cunaripo began to sense the title was theirs.
Speaking to Newsday prior to his team’s reply, the Cunaripo coach was confident his team would get the runs, describing it as an “easy chase”.
And true enough, Mahase and Ramroop made light work of the victory target, closing on 71 for the loss of no wicket.
Grinning from ear to ear after the victory, the Cunaripo coach congratulated his players on their effort and also thanked his assistant coach, teachers and the principal of the school for their patience, understanding and leeway in allowing the boys time to practice.
Asked what he stressed the most to his players going into the final, Mohabir said he just asked them to play their natural game.
“All we asked them to do is play basic cricket. We know they have the skill and the talent and all we wanted them to do is go out there and portray it,” he said.
The coach, who believes that many of his players will go on to represent the country at the various youth levels, also stated that he believes a monetary prize should be included as part of the tournament next year.
ST MARY’S GOVERNMENT 70 - Joshua Edwards 17, Andy Mahase 3/7, Ameer Ali 3/6, Anderson Mahase 2/5 vs CUNARIPO PRESBYTERIAN 71/0 - Tishan Ramroop 25 not out, Andy Mahase 13 not out.