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Stars prove to be masters of own destruction

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In full flow: Janeiro Tucker hammers the ball for another four at Southampton Oval (Photograph by Akil Simmons)

Southampton Oval (Southampton Rangers won toss): Southampton Rangers beat Western Stars by 16 runs

Two run outs late in the Western Stars innings cost them victory against the league champions as Janeiro Tucker was outstanding with both the bat and ball for the home team.

Saving five overs of his spell for the critical last ten overs of the Western Stars innings when they needed 71 for victory, Tucker was involved in a run out and then took wickets on successive balls — all in the 49th over — as Stars slumped from 207 for six to 208 for nine.

Stars eventually fell seventeen runs short of victory after earlier being well-placed at 114 for two when Justin Robinson, their captain, was third out, pulling a short delivery from Jason Wade to Curtis Jackson at mid-on.

It was the run out of Treadwell Gibbons at 171 for six that proved disastrous for Stars, caught out of his crease as he tried a risky single. Ricardo Brangman, the Rangers wicketkeeper, who went off injured earlier and later returned, was quick to run out the Stars top scorer for 46 in the 44th over. Gibbons hit five fours off 76 balls.

The second run out of Khiry Furbert at 207 for seven also proved costly as his 30 off 29 balls and kept Stars in the hunt for victory. He was run out going for a single in the 49th over as Brangman threw to Tucker to catch him short of the crease.

Earlier, Temiko Wilson and Wayne Campbell laid the foundation for Stars, putting on 56 for the first wicket in 15 overs. Stars brought up their 100 in the 30th over, but the required run rate continued to climb despite having wickets in hand going into the last 15 overs.

Brian Hall scored 30 off 21 balls with four fours and two sixes before he was fourth out on 158 in the 40th over. Rohan Davis scored a crucial unbeaten 15 as Stars fought to the end.

“In the middle of the innings we gave all these dot balls and left too much to do at the end,” said Wendell Smith, the Stars coach, who was unhappy with his team’s running between the wickets. Smith was also not pleased with his team’s fielding late in the Southampton innings, when they allowed tail-enders Kevin Tucker and Jason Wade to put on 44 for the unbroken eighth wicket in just five overs.

“The other thing is we have to be disciplined in the field, we overthrew the ball twice and gave up extra runs and instead of 230 we should have been chasing about 210. We have to learn to be disciplined on the field and how to rotate the strike, because we gave up too many dot balls.

“Of course Tready Gibbons’s out was major and then Khiry’s when he said he thought it was the last over. By then it was asking too much, we needed 24 off the last two overs, but we should have been rotating the strike before then.”

Janeiro Tucker finished with four for 39 from his ten overs to go with a well struck 64 from 47 balls in the Rangers middle order, hitting six fours and four sixes after coming in at 91 for four in the 30th over.

He was eventually out in the 45th over at 186 for seven, before Kevin Tucker and Wade took over. Wade supported his captain in the bowling, taking three for 46 off nine overs

Also scoring vital runs for Rangers were Kwame Tucker with 35, Ricardo Brangman 33 and Gerald Simons who scored 30 at the top of the innings.

Makai Young claimed four for 40 to lead the Stars bowling. He had taken three for 12 after seven overs before Janeiro Tucker hit him for two straight sixes, only to be out next ball when he was caught by Seth Campbell. Brian Hall had a tidy spell, going for just 22 from his ten overs.

“The two runs outs were very important and then Janeiro came back in the last couple of overs to really tighten it up,” Ricky Brangman, the Rangers coach, said.

“You always have to feel confident but Stars put up a good fight today and the game could have gone either way. I’m so proud we came through, the guys hung in there and when you keep playing and never give up this is what happens.

“We had a good weekend, won the Western County on Saturday and had some good batting from my skipper, 97 yesterday and 64 today.”

That’s the way to do it: Simons, left, and Jackson cross for a run at Southampton Oval (Photograph by Akil Simmons)
Glimmer of hope: Western Stars celebrate a wicket at Southampton Oval (Photograph by Akil Simmons)