O’Brien and Pitcher take revenge
Seventh-wicket pair George O’Brien and Rudell Pitcher put on a six-hitting exhibition to lead a vengeful St David’s to victory in a crazy inaugural One Premier Division Championship match yesterday.
With St David’s teetering on the brink at 76 for six after a series of brainless dismissals, having once been 47 for one in only the eighth over, the better-known bowlers flayed Southampton to all parts — enjoying no shortage of fortune — to put a smile on captain Chris Douglas’s face.
“It was good to get this victory over the team that took the league from us,” he said. “Thankfully, Rudell Pitcher came through for us today. There are times when he may fail [with the bat], but he is a big-day player and I was glad to have him on my team.”
St David’s had their opponents to thank for a series of missed catches, the most critical when Lamont Brangman carried a Pitcher hit to wide long-on over the rope in front of the pavilion when he had made 23.
It was the last real chance Southampton would get, as O’Brien and Pitcher combined to hit seven of the ten sixes in the innings.
As coach George Cannonier noted later, the situation did not call for such wild stroke play from his players. And as they inexplicably fell from 64 for two to 76 for six in the space of 19 balls — Ajuan Lamb (27), Allan Douglas (nought), Brian Hall (21) and Kevin Hurdle (one) all trying to clear the ropes — it nearly became a bit too much for the first-year captain.
“I wanted to leave the match because I couldn’t understand the lack of discipline in the way we were getting out,” he admitted.
O’Brien finished on 34, with two fours and three sixes, while Pitcher, later named the most valuable player, was 39 not out, with two fours and four sixes.
Malachi Jones, opening the bowling as an off spinner, profited from St David’s many moments of madness by taking from four for 21 from nine overs. Vernon Eve took the two other wickets that went to a bowler, but he was mighty expensive with two for 52 from only five overs.
Captain Dion Stovell, the country’s leading spinner, oddly bowled himself for only two overs, conceding six runs. “It was about giving others an opportunity to bowl,” he explained.
The Southampton captain, added, though, that he was far from pleased with his side’s attitude, in particular when the going got tough. “Our fielding was pathetic,” he said. “The body language looked like we were going through the motions, even though we had them at 70-odd for six. We still dropped two crucial catches against Rudell Pitcher. Once you drop catches, you lose like that. We just have to pick ourselves up for the T20.”
Stovell was also disappointed with the Southampton batting effort, noting that they were 40 to 60 runs short. “We batted poorly,” he said.
Their total of 156 was largely indebted to Ricardo Brangman, who marshalled the tail after Southampton lost wickets with regularity in slipping to 94 for seven. His 65 from 90 balls, with four fours and five sixes, was the only half-century of the match.
Brangman was last out in the wake of a rain delay that forced the match to be reduced to 45 overs a side, thus also lowering the St David’s target by seven runs.
Ceejay Outerbridge was the best of the St David’s bowlers with three for 31 and Allan Douglas took three for 36.
M O Jones lbw b Pitcher 5
N Raynor b Outerbridge 14
T Manders c Lamb b Pitcher 13
C Trott b Outerbridge 0
G Simons b A Douglas 12
*D Stovell lbw b A Douglas 18
†R Brangman† b Outerbridge 65
T Smith b A Douglas 6
V Eve run out 7
N Mills lbw b C Douglas 0
L Brangman not out 1
Extras (b 3, lb 5, w 7) 15
Total (36.4 overs) 156
Fall of wickets: 1-16, 2-28, 3-32, 4-38, 5-56, 6-86, 7-94, 8-148, 9-154.
Bowling: Outerbridge 8.4-0-31-3; Pitcher 6-0-25-2; O’Brien 10-1-51-0; A Douglas 10-1-36-3; C Douglas 2-0-5-1.
(target reduced to 150 in 45 overs)
†A Lamb c Stovell b Jones 27
A Cannonier lbw b Jones 0
*C Douglas lbw b Jones 24
B Hall c Raynor b Eve 21
A Douglas c L Brangman b Jones 0
G O’Brien not out 34
K Hurdle c Manders b Eve 1
R Pitcher not out 39
Extras (b 1, lb 5, nb 2, w 1) 9
Total (6 wkts, 25.3 overs) 155
R Foggo, C Outerbridge and J Carlington did not bat.
Fall of wickets: 1-6, 2-48, 3-64, 4-64, 5-75, 6-76.
Bowling: Mills 4-0-31-0; Jones 9-1-21-4; Trott 2-0-13-0; Eve 5-0-52-2; Stovell 2-1-6-0; Smith 2-0-7-0; L Brangman 1.3-0-19-0.
Umpires: E Carrington and J McKirdy.