Standing strong: Trinidad and Tobago batsman Daren Bravo pulls one to the leg side during the second day’s play of the Regional Four-Day match against the Windward Islands at Queen’s Park Oval, Port of Spain, yesterday. Bravo was unbeaten on 57 at stumps, leading the hosts to 127 for seven in their second innings. Behind the stumps is Windward Islands wicketkeeper Lindon James. —Photo: ISHMAEL SALANDY

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Bravo, Hosein give T&T edge over Windwards

By BY Kern De Freitas

Trinidad and Tobago’s opening Regional Four-Day Tournament encounter with Windward Islands looks set to finish inside of three days, with the hosts only marginally ahead after Darren Bravo led a second innings fightback yesterday at the Queen’s Park Oval, Port of Spain.

Bravo’s 57, in partnerships of 47 and 21 with Rayad Emrit (18) and Yannic Cariah (eight not out) respectively, left T&T stumbling along at 127 for seven but with an advantage of 227 after a first innings lead of 100.

But Akeal Hosein’s six for 33, which limited the Windwards to 122, ensured T&T’s top order meltdown in their second time at the crease did not put them out of the game. Bravo and Cariah will have the chance to come out again from 10 a.m. this morning and stretch the lead beyond their opponents.

It was Bravo’s firmness in the T&T second innings that prevented the Windwards from batting a second time in the same day. The rest of the batsmen failed to deal well with the full and straight line of the visitors. Opener Adrian Barath went caught behind, as five other batsmen were trapped in front, and one other, bowled.

Pacers Delorn Johnson, Nelon Pascal and left-armer Kenroy Peters were equally effective with the ball for the visitors, snatching two wickets each, the other going to slow bowler and captain Liam Sebastien.

Johnson pried out Lewis without scoring off the first ball of the second over, and he was followed by Barath (six) in the third over. First innings topscorer Jason Mohammed (six) could not repeat, as he was trapped lbw by Johnson, the ninth wicket to fall between lunch and tea.

In the final session, it got worse for T&T before it got better. Wicketkeeper Steven Katwaroo (two; bowled Sebastien) was the fourth T&T victim with the score on 32, and Imran Khan (25) and Akeal Hosein (duck) went off successive balls from Peters—again both lbw—spread across the 23rd and 25th overs.

Emrit checked the slide for a bit, mixing aggression with patience—he had one four and one six in 57 balls—but Pascal had his number deep into the session, and T&T were 106 for seven. But Cariah, once considered a batting allrounder, also proved solid, and helped Bravo take T&T in at stumps without further casualty.

Bravo’s determination was borne out by his 57 (nine fours) off 148 balls in just under three hours.

Still, the Windwards would not have been too upset with their position at the close given their performance with the bat. They resumed from their overnight 12 without loss with Devon Smith (eight) and Tyrone Theophille (four) at the crease.

But the batting through the innings definitely did not impress Smith (48 not out), as he watched first Theophille (17) depart at Emrit’s hands with the score on 38, and then the spine of his team’s batting snap over just about 32 overs.

Evin Lewis ran out Dalton Polius (five), before Hosein took over. He kept most of the other scalps under double figure scores, except for James, who hit 22 before he was tempted and stumped by Katwaroo off the left-arm spinner.

Jason Mohammed helped usher out the tail with the scalps of Sebastien (nine) and Peters (zero).

Hosein wrapped up the innings with the dismissals of Johnson and Pascal but the batsmen almost let that advantage slip away completely.

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