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Central Counties final to be family affair

Allan Douglas (right) is unavailable for Devonshire Rec in today’s Central Counties final, but Ricardo Brangman will come in as the second guest player if Nyhrobi Carmichael is not fit to play against Tuff Dogs (Photograph by Lawrence Trott)

Three Brangman brothers could feature as guest players in today’s Central Counties final at St John’s Field between champions Tuff Dogs and Devonshire Rec.

Derrick Brangman, who has played four times for Tuff Dogs in the competition since they joined last season, will return to the team after missing the last match against North Village.

His younger brother Lamont is lined up to play for Devonshire Rec as one of their two guest players, with the club awaiting news on the fitness of Nyhrobi Carmichael before finalising their team. Ricardo Brangman, the Southampton Rangers wicketkeeper-batsman, is the alternative if Carmichael, a Bailey’s Bay player, is not available.

“Nyhrobi has a niggling injury, if he can’t play we’ll bring in Ricardo,” explained Rec team official Dennis Williams. “Lamont is definitely playing.”

Rec, who came closest to beating Tuff Dogs last year when they went down by 29 runs in the second round, are forced to replace their two guest players, cousins Allan and Chris Douglas, who are unavailable. They were the top bats for Rec last year, Allan scoring 53 from just 21 balls and Chris 36 in the Rec total of 165 as they fell short in their chase of the 194 posted by Tuff Dogs.

“Allan is unavailable and Chris is a little ‘offline’ with what is happening with St David’s,” said Williams, referring to the decision by Douglas to stand down as captain of St David’s.

“This year we’re trying to bring in two bowlers, that’s where we’ve been weakest this season. If we get the two bowlers we’re looking for, combined with Zion Smith-Outerbridge who is back from England, but hasn’t played a game this year, that would strengthen our bowling and give us a chance.

“Also Dean Minors, who was recently in a bike accident, is the linchpin to their batting so that is going to be an advantage for us. As long as we bat well and hold on to our catches we stand a real good chance.”

Williams, a bowler himself, has “officially retired” after playing a few games for Rec this season. “I turned 50 on Tuesday and I’m not playing any cricket at the age of 50!” he stressed. “Last Saturday was my farewell game, but I’m still involved with the management of the team.”

Tuff Dogs are one win away from a sixth straight win in the competition as they look to finish another season as Central Counties champions. They have made two changes, bringing in Brangman and Dunford Davis for Monroe Darrell and Maurice Steede. Jordan DeSilva, the Somerset captain, is their other guest player.

Tuff Dogs: Maclaren Lowe, Trevor Corday, Azeem Pitcher, Jordan DeSilva, Kwame Steede, Derrick Brangman, Terence Corday (capt), Justin Barritt, Arnold Manders, Dunford Davis, Janaka Perrera. Res: Maurice Steede.

n Twenty20 matches continue tomorrow with Southampton Rangers meeting Bailey’s Bay at Southampton Oval in the clash between two title contenders. The two teams had their earlier match on June 2 abandoned after just a couple of overs because of rain.

St David’s, the defending champions, host Cleveland at St David’s while St George’s meet Flatts at Wellington Oval in the other Premier Division match.

In the First Division, Willow Cuts play Somerset at Somerset while Western Stars host PHC at St John’s Field and Somerset Bridge take on Devonshire Rec at White Hill. All games start at 11.00. PHC play Somerset Bridge at PHC Field in today’s only T20 match.