Devonshire Rec name Delray Rawlins as county guest of honour
Bermuda captain Delray Rawlins is poised to make his Central Counties debut after being named as a guest player by challengers Devonshire Recreation Club for their opening round match against holders Western Stars today.
The Sussex all-rounder is looking forward to showcasing his skills in the 50-overs competition and the task at hand against the visiting defending champions.
“Once asked, I jumped at the opportunity,” Rawlins told The Royal Gazette. “I am looking forward to it and I think it’s going to be a good day.”
It remains to be seen whether any play will be possible with the adverse weather that has plagued the island over the past several days again forecasted across the day.
“I just hope the weather stays away and we can get the whole game in,” Rawlins added.The player’s addition has reinforced Devonshire’s batting and bowling, something which could potentially pose a threat to Stars’ title defence.
On a personal break from Sussex, Rawlins has already made his presence felt on island playing for Bailey’s Bay in the Premier Division 50 Overs competition.
He is one of two guest players Devonshire have named in their squad along with fellow all-rounder Derrick Brangman, who is making his club debut in the competition and has also impressed with both and ball playing for Premier Division 50 overs champions St David’s.
“We took both of them for their experience and hopefully it really helps us,” Lamont Brangman, the Devonshire captain, said.
“I think we are pretty strong. We have good batters all the way down to No 10 so I feel kind of confident as long as mother nature holds up.”
Holders Stars have yet to announce their squad.
The winner will face Derrick Brangman’s former Central Counties team, Tuff Dogs, in the second round on June 10 for the right to face North Village in the final to be held on June 24.
Meanwhile, the Premier Division 50 Overs competition heats up today with St George’s hosting Cleveland County in a top-of-the-table clash at Wellington Oval which could have a strong bearing on the outcome of the title race.
Cleveland trail leaders Bailey’s Bay by five points with St George’s a further five points adrift in third heading into the penultimate round of the competition.
Clay Smith, the St George’s coach, is well aware of the implications heading into the pivotal match.
“There’s not a lot to be said,” he said.
“We are just praying for good weather because mathematically we still are in with a chance of winning the title.
“The game is of the utmost importance as we need a win to give ourselves a mathematical chance of still winning the league.
“However, if the game does not get played there’s no chance of that, so fingers crossed that we are able to play and after that it’s in our own hands.
“We just have to perform well on the day and we know who we are up against.
“They are a very good team that haven’t lost yet, so we have to handle our own business. That’s what it’s about, taking care of our own business.”
The match will be newly appointed Cleveland coach and former St George’s captain Clevie Wade’s first since taking over the reins.
Elsewhere, Bay host Stars at Sea Breeze Oval tomorrow with Rawlins set to return to their line-up having missed the previous match against St George’s.
“I am looking forward to the whole weekend,” Rawlins said.
“Hopefully, it’s going to be a good weekend all round and I just hope the poor weather stays away.”
St David’s host Warwick at Lord’s in tomorrow’s remaining top flight match that will have a strong bearing on relegation.
The champions, Warwick and Southampton Rangers, who have a bye this weekend, have yet to pick up a win this season.
First Division 50 Overs action will see Somerset Bridge host the Bermuda Under-19 team at White Hill Field today, with leaders Somerset hosting Willow Cuts in a top-of-the-table clash at Somerset and hosts Devonshire pitted against Flatts in tomorrow’s remaining matches.