Joseph holds up Leewards on Day 1
BASSETERRE, St Kitts – Veteran batsman Sylvester Joseph stroked an aggressive half-century but Barbados stole honours on the rain-ruined opening day of the sixth round Regional Four-Day Championship match here Saturday.
Opting to bat first at Warner Park, the Leeward Islands finished the day on 161 for six, with skipper Joseph striking an entertaining 64.
West Indies second string wicketkeeper Devon Thomas scored 34 while Tonito Willett was leading a fightback with an unbeaten 31.
Left-arm spinner Sulieman Benn (2-47) and off-spinner Ashley Nurse (2-71) picked up two wickets apiece to lead the Barbados attack.
Rain allowed just 45 overs and ended play prematurely, with several overs left in the day.
Following a 40-minute delay at the start, the Leewards found themselves reeling early on, losing two quick wickets to tumble to eight for two in the third over of the day.
Opener Lyndel Richardson fended a short ball from West Indies speedster Tino Best to Kraigg Brathwaite at third slip off the day’s fifth delivery, to fall without scoring with a single run on the board.
Shane Burton then followed for six with the score on eight, caught at short leg by Rashidi Boucher off a short delivery from rookie pacer Miguel Cummins.
Things went from bad to worse for the Leewards when Test opener Kieran Powell was felled by a short ball from Best and forced to retire hurt on ten, at 17 for two in the seventh over.
However, Joseph and Thomas then came together to extend the third wicket stand to 92, to lead the Leewards fightback.
Rains forced an early lunch with the Leewards on 28 for two but on resumption both batsmen played freely to haul the innings out of turmoil.
Joseph struck six fours and three sixes in an innings lasting 118 balls and 109 minutes while Thomas faced 42 balls and counted six boundaries in a breezy knock.
Nurse got the breakthrough when he had Thomas caught at cover by Brathwaite and also removed Jahmar Hamilton soon afterward, taken at slip by Jonathan Carter for seven, to leave the Leewards on 116 for four.
Joseph and Willett put on another 31 for the fifth wicket before Joseph was stumped by Shane Dowrich off Benn.
Willett has so far struck five fours in his 44-ball knock.
LEEWARD ISLANDS 161 for six (Sylvester Joseph 65, Devon Thomas 34, Tonito Willett 31 not out; Sulieman Benn 2-47, Ashley Nurse 2-71) v BARBADOS
LEEWARDS 1st Innings
K Powell ret. hurt 10
L Richardson c Brathwaite b Best 0
S Burton c Boucher b Cummins 6
*S Joseph st Dowrich b Benn 65
+D Thomas c Brathwaite b Nurse 34
J Hamilton c Carter b Nurse 7
T Willett not out 31
H Walsh c Boucher b Benn 2
J Athanaze not out 1
Extras (w1, nb4) 5
TOTAL (6 wkts, 45 overs) 161
Fall of wickets: 1-1, 2-8, 3-100, 4-116, 5-147, 6-149.
To bat: K Walters, A Martin.
Bowling: Best 7-2-23-1 (nb1), Cummins 6-1-20-1 (w1, nb1), Nurse 16-0-71-2 (nb2), Benn 16-5-47-2.
BARBADOS – *K Edwards, K Brathwaite, R Boucher, J Carter, S Hope, +S Dowrich, K Stoute, A Nurse, T Best, M Cummins, S Benn.
Umpires: J Wilson, M Mikul (Bangladesh)