Stovell and Manders put Cuts to the sword
White Hill Field (Willow Cuts won toss): Southampton Rangers (10pts) beat Willow Cuts by 108 runs
Malachi Jones has no concerns about Southampton Rangers dealing with the pressure of their “favourites tag” after easing to a 108-run victory over Willow Cuts at White Hill Field yesterday.
Having secured a 76-run opening day victory over Bailey's Bay, Rangers made it back-to-back wins at the start of the Twenty20 Premier Division, setting a total of 199 for six, before bowling the opposition out for 91 with five overs to spare.
With every victory, Jones is fully aware the pressure to maintain standards increases, but he remains confident his side will continue to meet expectations.
“The aim at the start of any season is to win the league; that's the minimum for a team like ours, we always look to add to the trophy cabinet,” Jones said.
“We are always looked at as the team to beat and so we are used to that pressure. It's all about us coming in, staying focused and doing what we have to do. St Davids and Somerset look to be our strongest challengers and so we just have to keep pushing forward.
“Back-to-back wins is always welcome at the start of the season and particularly because we haven't been training together.
“We really applied ourselves and hats off to Dion [Stovell] and Tre [Manders] who put on a really strong partnership and built the foundations for us to push on win comfortably.
“With the batting line-up we have, we should be targeting at least 160 in any game and if we can do that then I feel like we can compete against any team.”
Having been put into bat, Rangers confidently reached 30 before the loss of opener Shannon Raynor (15) in the fourth over.
Despite the setback, fellow opener Stovell (56) and Manders (49) quickly settled into their stride, forming a formidable partnership before the latter fell in the fourteenth over, one short of his century, having helped take the score to 123.
Charles Trott (5) came and went, trapped leg before Kwasi James an over later, but any fears of a collapse were short-lived with the introduction of Allan Douglas Jr (18), who set about trying to bludgeon the ball around the field from the offset of his innings.
The influential Stovell finally departed in the sixteenth over, clean bowled by Joseph Basden, with Douglas following a little under three overs later, caught on the boundary off the bowling of Micah Simons, with the score at 175 for five. Captain Jones departed the very next ball, run out, having added a quickfire 21 off ten balls leaving Najiyah Raynor (1 not out) and Janeiro Tucker, who added an impressive 22 not out from seven balls including two sixes, to see out the innings finishing on an imposing 199 for six.
James and Basden were the pick of Cuts bowlers claiming two wickets apiece, with Simons claiming the remaining one.
Despite the daunting target, Willow Cuts would have remained confident having successfully chased down a target of 199 in their four-wicket opening day victory against St George's.
However, there was to be no similar heroics this time around with both opening batsmen Ras Solomon Burrows (8) and Kwasi James (2) departing with barely four overs played and only 17 runs on the board.
Dwight Basden (16) settled the innings slightly before caught off the bowling of Jones two overs later having helped take the score over 30, with Shaquille Bean (8) following in the tenth over with the score at 61 for four.
The struggles continued with Joseph Basden (2), captain Kamal Bashir (24) and Sergio Raynor (3) all being dismissed over the next two overs with only five runs added to the total, which stood at 66 for seven.
Antonio Darrell (1) and Micah Simons (6) came and went without much resistance, leaving just one wicket intact, 75 runs on the board and more than seven overs remaining.
It was left to Douglas to complete his four wicket-haul, clean bowling Sher-Maur Gomes with 14.6 overs completed to clinch victory.
Jones and Stovell also both completed three-wicket-hauls to round off a satisfying afternoon with the bat and ball for Rangers.
D Stovell b Joseph Basden 56
S Raynor c CB Basden b Kwasi Jame s15
T Manders c Dwight Basden b Joseph Basden 49
C Trott lbw b Kwasi James 5
A Douglas c Kwasi James b Micah Simons 18
*M Jones run out 21
†N Raynor not out 1
J Tucker not out 22
Extras (w 6, nb 2, lb 4) 12
Total (6wkts; 20 overs) 199
Jaloni Albuoy, Keedai Astwood, KL Tucker, Lamont Brangman, Nirobi Mills, Tayo Smith did not bat
Fall of Wickets: 1-30, 2-123, 3-129, 4-137, 5-175, 6-175
Bowling: Simons 4-0-33-1; James 4-0-38-2; Darrell 4-0-30-0; Bashir 4-0-68-0; Basden 4-0-26-2
R Solomon Burrows lbw b Jones 8
K James b Jones 2
D Basden c Tayo Smith b Jones 16
†S B Bean lbw b DC Stovell 8
*Kamal Bashir c Albuoy b Douglas 24
J Basden b Stovell 2
S Raynor b Stovell 3
M Simons lbw b Douglas 6
A Darrell b Douglas 1
C B Basden not out 0
Sher-Maur Gomes b Douglas 3
Extras (w 11, nb 6, b 1) 18
Total (10 wkts; 15.0 overs) 91
Faheem Swan did not bat
Fall of Wicket: 1-4, 2-17, 3-31, 4-61, 5-63, 6-65, 7-66, 8-67, 9-75, 10-91-10
Bowling: Jones 4-1-19-3; Mills 3-0-13-0; Stovell 3-0-20-3; Douglas; Astwood 1-0-16-0