PREVIEW: Old foes renew rivalry
BRIDGETOWN, Barbados - Perennial rivals Barbados and Trinidad and Tobago square-off in what is expected to be an exciting climax to the 2013 Regional four-day Tournament starting Thursday at Kensington Oval.
Both sides are entering the finals of the competition with a surge in confidence following impressive semi-final victories to secure their spot.
The Barbadians crushed Windward Islands by 101-runs inside two days last Friday in Dominica while T&T came from behind to topple previously unbeaten Jamaica on Sunday.
“I’m just as confident of winning the title as I was when we played the first game,” said Barbados captain Kirk Edwards.
“We set out at the beginning of the tournament to win the title and it is about us doing what we do well, going through our disciplines and looking for a positive result,”
The hosts landed a 10-wicket victory over the visitors when the two sides met in the penultimate round of the preliminary competition last month in Trinidad.
But Edwards has brushed aside assertions that his team may have the psychological edge, following that victory.
“The game is played on the field and you can’t go based on what has happened in the past,” said Edwards.
“We have just come off a good game last week and if we don’t play well, the results will be against us, so it’s all about what happens on the time and we should not get caught up with this other stuff, just focus on what we have to do.”
T&T captain Denesh Ramdin said his side will be looking to end a roller coaster season on a high.
They claimed the final edition of the Caribbean Twenty20 Tournament last January, and reached the semi-finals of the Regional Super50, where they lost to the Combined Campuses & Colleges at this same venue.
“To win another title will be another achievement,” said Ramdin.
“We did not do very well in the RS50, after playing unbeaten in the preliminary rounds, which was disheartening for us and everyone was upset about it, but we would like to go all the way in this format.
The two teams have fought some fierce battles over the last decade but the home team has been able to win their last three Regional 4-Day matches against the two-island republic.
Ramdin said his side was well aware of the history of matches between the two sides, but they were focused on the bigger picture, and trying to end the season with a strong performance, particularly in their batting.
“The self belief is there. . .We believe we have worked on all the areas that we needed to do,” he said.
“Our batting still has not come off the way we want, but our bowlers have been doing a fantastic job throughout the season so far.”
West Indies batting legend Sir Everton Weekes will present the winning captain with the Headley/Weekes Trophy, symbol of Regional 4-Day supremacy.
BARBADOS (from): Kirk Edwards (captain), Suliemen Benn, Rashidi Boucher, Kraigg Brathwaite, Jonathan Carter, Roston Chase, Miguel Cummins, Shane Dowrich, Shai Hope, Ashley Nurse, Kemar Roach, Javon Searles, Kevin Stoute
TRINIDAD & TOBAGO (from): Denesh Ramdin (captain), Adrian Barath, Yannic Carriah, Rayad Emrit, Shannon Gabriel, Akeal Hosein, Amit Juggernauth, Steven Katwaroo, Imran Khan, Jason Mohammed, Marlon Richards, Lendl Simmons, Jeremy Solozano