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Johnson, Deonarine steer Guyana to brilliant victory

lBASSETERRE

Half-centuries from Leon Johnson and Narsingh Deonarine trumped Chadwick Walton's maiden first-class hundred, propelling Guyana to an historic four-wicket victory over Combined Campuses & Colleges (CCC) in the Regional 4-Day Tournament, on Sunday.

Johnson hit the top score of 54 and Deonarine made 50, as the Guyanese, in pursuit of 217 for victory, hit the jackpot about 20 minutes before the scheduled close, on the final day of their third round match at Warner Park.

Johnson struck six boundaries from 92 balls in close to 2 ½ hours of batting, and fellow left-hander Deonarine smote eight fours and one six from 56 balls in close to 1 ½ hours.

They added 83 for the third wicket to put Guyana on the road before a stand of 55 for the fifth wicket between Assad Fudadin and Christopher Barnwell put them in reach.

Fudadin got 42 and Barnwell supported with 24 before they were dismissed in the final hour of the match.

Derwin Christian formalised Guyana's first ever victory over the CCC with a boundary to third-man from a thick edge off Kevin McClean, whose four wickets for 53 runs from 12.5 overs made him the pick of the CCC bowlers, with Jason Holder capturing two for 43 from 16 overs.

Guyana earned 12 points for the win.

Walton had promised much in the past, but had failed to reach the milestone on eight previous trips past 50. However, he kept his composure this time and reached the milestone, anchoring CCC to 342 in their second innings.

His 119 from 153 balls included seven fours and one six in a shade under 3 ½ hours, sharing a 63-run, last-wicket stand with compatriot Jason Dawes that gave the CCC a fighting chance.

Barnwell was Guyana's most successful bowler with six for 78 from 27 overs.

A leaden-footed Rajendra Chandrika was lbw for a duck to a delivery that moved back from McClean in the first over, setting Guyana back early in their chase.

The substantive home team reached 20 for one at lunch, and were just getting into the swing of things after the interval, when left-handed opener Sewnarine Chattergoon was caught at slip for 15 flashing at a wide delivery from McClean.

Deonarine came to the crease and batted positively, racing to his 50 before Holder bowled him.

After reaching his 50 following the tea break, Johnson was caught behind taking evasive action from a lifting delivery from Holder.

The Guyanese innings was at the crossroads at 133 for four in the first 15 minutes after tea, but Barnwell joined Fudadin and they continued the enterprising approach to put the CCC bowlers on the back foot.

When McClean had Barnwell caught at mid-wicket, Guyana needed a further 31, but Fudadin got them within reach before he was lbw to the same bowler playing across a delivery that straightened.

Earlier, CCC were dismissed about 20 minutes before lunch after they started the day on 274 for eight.

Walton struck 10 fours and two sixes from 213 balls in just under five hours.

Ryan Austin was caught at extra-cover off Barnwell without adding to his overnight score of nought before Dawes was caught at forward short-leg for 17 from Deonarine's off-spin following his important stand with Walton.

Both teams will play under the lights in the fourth round, starting on Friday, when Guyana face Jamaica at the Vivian Richards Cricket Ground, and CCC meet Barbados at Kensington Oval.

—CMC

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