Rampaul returns to domestic action
PORT OF SPAIN, TRINIDAD, Trinidad and Tobago and West Indies pacer Ravi Rampaul will return to action today for his club PowerGen Penal Sports after being sidelined with injury and then illness since the end of the Caribbean Twenty20 in January.
Rampaul rejoins his club for their fifth round National League Premier Division two-day match against his former club CLICO Preysal at Inshan Ali Park, Preysal and his return could not have come at a better time for PowerGen, who are still without three key players.
Top batsman Evin Lewis is with the T&T team for their Regional Four-Day Tournament match against the Leeward Islands in St Kitts and PowerGen will also be without spinner Kavesh Kantasingh and wicket-keeper Gibran Mohammed, who are also on national duty.
Rampaul is expected to spearhead PowerGen's bowling attack, which also includes Trinidad and Tobago Under-19 left-arm spinner Jovan Ali.
Standing in for Mohammed is former T&T Under-19 wicket-keeper Rickson Maniram and replacing Lewis is Guyanese batsman Rajindra Chandrika, who will open the innings with the centurion in PowerGen's previous match, Nicholas Sookdeosingh.
Despite Preysal's last place standing in the 12-team table, Rampaul will still be in for a good workout this weekend, especially with Guyanese pair of Narsingh Deonarine and Trevon Griffith lining up for the hosts.
Griffith was a stand-out performer for Preysal in last year's Premiership Twenty20 and returns to add some stability to the team's batting.
But Deonarine will be the one Preysal will be looking towards to get them out of the cellar position.
The left-hand batsman has 547 runs in six matches for Guyana in the Regional Four-Day Tournament, with six half-centuries, and he will be looking to continue that form for Preysal this weekend.
Former T&T skipper Daren Ganga is also expected to return to action this weekend for his club Alescon Comets after returning from England, where he attended his law school graduation ceremony.
Comets, who are eighth in the standings with 32 points, host First Citizens Clarke Road at Pierre Road, Charlieville.
In other matches this weekend, defending champions and current leaders Queen's Park Cricket Club are in action against W Connection Wanderers at Queen's Park Oval, Port of Spain, while second place LLumar Esmeralda take on third place Merry Boys at CIC Ground on Serpentine Road, St Clair.
Wanderers gave T&TEC a shock in the previous round and will be looking to do the same against the Parkites.
Wanderers defeated T&TEC by 30 runs last weekend and will feel they have a good chance of getting their second win of the season against an under-strength Queen's Park, who will be missing many of their first-choice players.
Among those missing are regular captain Justin Guillen, all-rounder Akeal Hosein and batsman Marlon Barclay, who are all on national duty.
T&T Under-19 all-rounder Isaiah Rajah comes into the Parkites senior team for the first time this season and he is coming off a century for East in the BG T&T Under-19 InterZone tournament.
Former national Under-19 wicket-keeper/batsman Savion Lara is also in the side, along with veteran Lincoln Roberts.
All matches bowl off at 10 a.m. today and continue tomorrow from 9.30 a.m.