Cup Match is finally here. How the teams match up
All the talk is over; Cup Match is finally here.
Looking at the two teams, this year's match should be very entertaining. There has been a lot of talk about the St George's team, while Somerset surprised many by dropping one of their more reliable and proven senior players, Stephen Outerbridge.
Many feel that Somerset have a team that could easily keep the cup, but St George's definitely believe otherwise, as they have picked a team capable of dethroning Somerset if the players play to their ability.
On paper, this has the making to be an entertaining, well-balanced game that could go either way. Today, I want to look at both teams and see how they match up, player against player, just to show you how close of a match this could be.
Oronde Bascome—Jekon Edness: There is not much that separates the two in terms of experience. Oronde has the potential to be a very explosive bat. As captain, his use of his bowlers and his field placing will be crucial over the two days. Jekon is an exceptional wicketkeeper-batsman. He appears fearless and has tremendous belief in his team.
Jason Anderson—Chris Douglas: Jason is probably the most in-form batsman going into Cup Match after back to back fifties in recent matches. His last knock of 76 against St David's sealed his spot in the team. It was one of the best batting displays seen on the Island for a very long time. Chris, on the other hand, is right there with him in terms of form. Chris is Somerset's most in-form bat and on his day can destroy any bowling attack.
Fiqre Crockwell—Terryn Fray: Fiqre has been streaky this season; when he is good, he has been very good. If he plays to his potential, he will be a handful for the Somerset bowlers. Terryn is a very reliable, steady batsman who keeps it simple. He, too, can be very streaky, but when he is on form, he is pretty to watch.
OJ Pitcher—Deunte Darrell: OJ loves Cup Match and his performances over the years have been excellent. He is one of, if not, St George's most reliable batsmen. Deunte is back in the team on the back of an outstanding season, thus far. He is one of the most naturally talented batsmen that Bermuda has produced for a long time.
Lionel Cann—Janeiro Tucker: Both nicknamed Mr Cup Match by their respective clubs, Lionel on his day is without a doubt the most destructive batsman on the Island. His experience over the two days could be the deciding factor in the match. Janeiro is very explosive. If St George's are not careful, he can single-handedly turn the match in Somerset's favour, with either bat or ball.
Shannon Rayner—Tre Manders: Shannon proved his worth with a century in the first trial against a potent St David's bowling attack. He has the ability to score runs quickly, which is exactly what St George's need. Tre, on the other hand, has already shown he belongs on the big stage, having already scored a Cup Match hundred. He has bags of potential.
Delray Rawlins—Derrick Brangman: Delray brings a new dimension to St George's bowling attack, it being the first time in several years that St George's have fielded a left-arm spinner. Delray has great all-around ability. Do not be surprised if he scores fifty on his debut because he has that type of ability. Derrick is a proven player who plays to his strengths. I do not think Cup Match has yet to see his true ability, but he goes into this year's Cup Match in some devastating bowling form.
Rodney Trott—Jacobi Robinson: Rodney has proven time and again that he is a big-day man. He has ability with both bat and ball, but St George's will need him to be more lethal with the ball if they are to dethrone Somerset. Jacobi is Mr Entertainer. He loves to entertain the crowd and is definitely someone whom the crowd can rely on to produce. Whether it be batting or bowling, he has an aggressive mentality that one has to admire.
George O'Brien—Malachi Jones: George has been a thorn in Somerset's side for years. If it is one bowler Somerset fear, it is George O'Brien. His batting has improved tremendously, too, and if he gets it right on the day, he will be a crowd-pleaser. Malachi is Somerset's go-to guy in the bowling department. He started the season on fire with the bat, but has cooled off as of late, but this is Cup Match. Expect Malachi to be at his best.
Kyle Hodsoll—Jordan DeSilva: Kyle is one of the leading wicket-takers in the league coming into Cup Match. His ability to bowl long spells will be crucial to St George's success. He also has the ability to score runs in a hurry. Jordan comes back into the team on merit. His league form has been very good. He has ability with both bat and ball, and on his day can be a handful.
Lateef Trott—Greg Maybury: Lateef will be called upon to bowl long spells for St George's, as he is always consistently threatening to take wickets. His bowling is aggressive and so, too, is his batting. Greg is a natural swing bowler, which will be much needed on what is likely to be a flat batting track. On his day, he can chip in with a few runs, but it is his bowling that St George's will need to be worried about.
As you can see from my comparisons, there is not much that separates the two Cup Match teams. It is merely just a matter of who shows up on the day. Both teams have their match-winners, but the deciding factors could be who can perform under pressure and which team get their tactics right.
My biggest concern is whether Somerset will prepare a flat batting track like they had last Saturday for their final trial or will they prepare a wicket to entertain the thousands of people that are coming to watch a victory?
Quote of the week: “You carry on no matter what are the obstacles. You simply refuse to give up — and, when the going gets tough, you get tougher. And, you win.” - Vince Lombardi