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By Peter Della Penna
tight bowling performance from USA’s spin contingent set up a
comfortable chase as they defeated Bermuda by six wickets on Tuesday at
the National Sports Club in Hamilton, Bermuda on the fourth day of
matches at the ICC Americas Division One Tournament. USA and Bermuda
both stand at 3-1 in the tournament behind 4-0 Canada with one day of
50-over games remaining before the Twenty20 event begins on Friday.
Pic (Right): File photo of Man of the Match Steve Massiah [Courtesy: Daniela Zaharia/USACA]
captain Steve Massiah was named Man of the Match after a solid
all-round display, taking 2 for 33 in 10 overs of off-spin before he
steered USA toward the target of 189 by top-scoring with 67 coming in
at number three.
USA won the toss and opted to field. Carl Wright and Timroy Allen came
back into the lineup for USA in favor of Clain Williams and Bilal Khan.
For the second day in a row, Adrian Gordon struck with only one run on
the board, having Fiqre Crockwell caught behind by Ashhar Mehdi in the
second over for 1. Jekon Edness was then joined by Stephen Outerbridge
and the two built some momentum for Bermuda with a 76-run second wicket
stand. It was Massiah who finally made the breakthrough for USA, having
Outerbridge caught behind for 48 in the 21st over. Seven balls later,
off-spinner Muhammad Ghous struck another blow for USA, removing Edness
Massiah set Bermuda back even further when he had captain David Hemp
out stumped for 8 to end the 25th over and Bermuda’s innings had been
turned upside down with the score at 91 for 4. The in-form Janeiro
Tucker was joined at the crease by Irving Romaine. Tucker had scored
136 against Argentina, including 15 sixes, as well as 77 the day before
against Cayman Islands. However, Lennox Cush produced the first of his
four wickets, bowling Tucker for 17 to make it 113 for 5 in the 32nd
Romaine and Rodney Trott battled to put on 48 runs for the sixth wicket
before Romaine was finally dismissed for 34 by Cush to make it 161 for
6 in the 46th. Two overs later, Cush got Trott for 15 to make it 172
for 7. A runout by sub fielder Williams sent back Joshua Gilbert for 5
before Cush took his fourth by bowling Jim West for 2 with two balls to
go in the innings. Bermuda finished 188 for 9 in their 50 as Jordan
DeSilva finished not out on 13 while last man Kevin Tucker was unbeaten
on 1. Cush finished with a superb 4 for 30 in his 10 overs while Ghous
was USA’s most economical bowler for the second match in a row, with a
miserly 1 for 22 in 10.
Wright opened up the chase with Sushil Nadkarni, but Wright didn’t last
long as he was dismissed for 11 in the 7th over by 20-year-old left-arm
paceman DeSilva to make it 28 for 1. Massiah arrived and soon took
control of the match once more for USA, constructing a 113-run
partnership with Nadkarni as they eased their way towards the target.
Nadkarni was finally dismissed by Trott at the start of the 34th over,
but not before scoring his second-half century in as many days,
finishing with 57 in 96 balls with two fours and four sixes.
Cush joined Massiah at the crease, but USA stumbled briefly when
Massiah was out to West at the end of the 41st over with the score at
167. He finished with seven fours and a six. Three balls later, Aditya
Thyagarajan suffered his first failure of the tournament, out to
DeSilva without scoring. Rashard Marshall came to the crease and teamed
up with Cush to get USA over the line in the 47th over. Marshall ended
the match with back-to-back sixes to finish 17 not out while Cush was
22 not out.
After a day off on Wednesday, USA plays 1-3 Cayman Islands on Thursday
in the final 50-over match day of the event. Cayman Islands lost to
Argentina by 13 runs on Wednesday while Canada chased a target of 99 in
8.5 overs, demolishing Bahamas by 10 wickets. Bermuda faces Canada on
Thursday. Even if the host country wins and USA disposes of Cayman
Islands to produce a three-way tie at 4-1, USA has virtually no chance
to become the tournament champions as they are way behind both Canada
and Bermuda on net run rate. At the other end of the table, 0-4 Bahamas
must not only beat 1-3 Argentina on Thursday, but do so by a wide
enough margin to pass Argentina on net run rate in order to avoid
relegation back to Americas Division Two.