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Bermuda wilt in Kuala Lumpur heat

A fine all-round performance from Allan Douglas Jr could not prevent the Bermuda XI sliding to defeat against Bahrain in their final warm-up match before the ICC Cricket World Cup Challenge League Play-off begins on Thursday (Photograph by Blaire Simmons)

Club Aman, Kuala Lumpur (Bahrain won toss): Bahrain beat Bermuda XI by five wickets

Bermuda’s final warm-up for the ICC Cricket World Cup Challenge League Play-off ended in a chastening defeat yesterday.

With the full 15-man squad finally together in the wake of a destabilising passport mix-up that resulted in six players, including captain Delray Rawlins, missing the pre-tournament training camp in India, the realities of the task at hand — even at this the lowest rung in the qualifying ladder for the 50-over World Cup — were brought harshly to bear.

In a 30-overs contest played in a searing 87F that felt like 99F, Bermuda limped to 119 for eight — an under-par total that was largely indebted to a typically breezy 54 from 44 balls by Allan Douglas Jr, which included five fours and four sixes.

The only other genuine scoring intent came from tailender Zeko Burgess, who blasted 19 not out from ten balls as he and Chare Smith ensured the Bahrainis required four an over in their chase.

Marcus Scotland, who shared in a 49-run partnership with Douglas for the fourth wicket, was the only other batter in double figures with 12 — albeit from 45 balls.

Opener Chris Douglas retired hurt for five after taking a blow to the right arm from a short-pitched ball, and Terry Fray’s rich vein of form in India that yielded back-to-back unbeaten hundreds was checked when he fell for seven.

Tre Manders and captain Rawlins also went cheaply, for four and two respectively.

Bermuda got in among the wickets early in the Bahrain reply, with seam bowler Chare Smith and off spinner Allan Douglas striking, but a third-wicket stand of 75 between Prashant Kurup and Sohail Ahmed effectively took the game away.

The retirement of Kurup on 39 with the score 96 precipitated a mini-collapse, as Allan Douglas immediately picked up Sohail for 38 and Zeko Burgess cleaned up Ahmer bin Nisar for one, but Haider Ali (15 not out) and Imran Anwar (ten not out) were untroubled the rest of the way.

Allan Douglas finished with two for 20 from six overs to complete a decent all-round day.

He was one of the “Stranded Six”, who each got a run-out today while Kamau Leverock, a certain starter when Bermuda launch their campaign in earnest against Italy in group A on Thursday (Wednesday, 9.30pm Bermuda time), was rested as a batter.

Leverock did get on the pitch in the fielding innings, as both teams used their full squad of 14 players.

Jermal Proctor, an original standby player who was pressed into duty in India because of the visa shambles, was the fifteenth player used and bowled the final over — likely his last action on tour unless there is an emergency squad change for injury.

Bermuda coach Cal Waldron had little option but to focus on the positives in the short time he has had the full squad at his disposal on this tour.

“It was good to get the team together and get everyone into these conditions,” he said. “Us coaches were able to recognise and pinpoint some things that we need to address tactically and technically that should help the team and individuals to perform better.”

The statistical breakdown from this match exposed a glaring weakness in Bermuda cricket, with an alarming 123 dot balls faced — the equivalent of 20.3 overs — compared with 94 by Bahrain, while the opponents hustled through for 58 singles as opposed to the Bermuda XI’s 35.

There is little time left to fine-tune with the big match-up against tournament favourites Italy fast approaching.

Waldron added: “Pitch conditions are not like in Bermuda. Morning bowling helps the seam bowlers and the spinners are turning the balls with ease.”

This was emphasised by Mohsin Zaki, Bahrain’s slow left-armer, ending as their chief wicket-taker with three for 16 from four overs.

The overhead conditions are also a concern, although Bermuda should not be surprised, given that senior and junior national teams have been playing tournament cricket in Malaysia since 1997.

“It is hot and very humid,” Waldron said. “We have to remind the players of the importance of being hydrated. Today was only 30 overs, and some felt the effects of those conditions.”

Bermuda’s group also includes Saudi Arabia and Kuwait, while in group B the teams are Bahrain, Vanuatu, Tanzania and hosts Malaysia.

The top three teams from each group qualify for the Super Six, after which the top four move on to the Challenge League proper.


Bermuda XI

C Douglas retired hurt 5

T Fray b Butt 7

T Manders b Butt 4

*D Rawlins c Badar b Anwar 2

A Douglas c Ali b Abbasi 54

M Scotland c Bin Nisar b Zaki 12

D Sabir c and b Zaki 7

†S Smith c Shah b Abbasi 3

D Brangman c and b Zaki 3

Z Burgess not out 19

C Smith not out 0

Extras (lb 1, w 2) 3

Total (8 wkts; 30 overs) 119

Fall of wickets: 1-13, 2-18, 3-37, 4-86, 5-93, 6-97, 7-97, 8-103.

Bowling: Dawood 4-0-10-0; Butt 4-0-24-2; Anwar 3-1-3-1; Veerapathiran 3-0-12-0; Abbasi 6-0-20-2; Kumar 5-1-17-0; Zaki 4-0-16-3; Shah 1-0-16-0.


†Shahbaz Badar c S Smith b C Smith 5

Prashant Kurup retired out 38

Junaid Aziz b A Douglas 8

*Sohail Ahmed c Scotland b A Douglas 39

Haider Ali not out 15

Ahmer bin Nisar b Burgess 1

Imran Anwar not out 10

Extras (b 3, w 3) 6

Total (5 wkts; 27.5 overs) 122

A Dawood, Rizwan Butt, S Veerapathiran, S Kumar, Abdul Majid Abbasi, Abid Ullah Shah and Mohsin Zaki did not bat.

Fall of wickets: 1-9, 2-19, 3-94, 4-96, 5-97.

Bowling: C Smith 6-1-25-1; Brangman 4-0-12-0; A Douglas 6-0-20-2; Burgess 5-0-24-1; Rawlins 5-0-25-0; Sabir 1-0-7-0; Proctor 0.5-0-6-0.

Umpires: R Ismandy Mansor and K Iman

• 14 a side (11 bat, 11 field)

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Published February 21, 2024 at 7:59 am (Updated February 21, 2024 at 8:10 am)

Bermuda wilt in Kuala Lumpur heat

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