PowerGen’s hopes of successfully defending their Shanghai Construction Group (SCG) National League Premier Division title could stay alive or possibly end at Syne Village in Penal this weekend.
The venue in southern Trinidad will host the crucial ninth round match between the defending champs and the current League leaders Merry Boys Sports bowling off at 10 a.m. today and continuing tomorrow from 9.30 a.m.
The Diego Martin club are on 194 points from eight games, of which they have won seven and drawn one, and have a 32-point cushion at the top of the 12-team table.
Former champions Queen’s Park Cricket Club are second on 162 points and PowerGen third on 161.
Merry Boys will now make the long trip to Penal knowing that an outright win will bring them one step closer to clinching the title.
It is an important match for both teams who will have their full complement of national players.
Merry Boys have gotten over most of their opponents with ease while PowerGen have won five and drawn three matches, with their worst performance of the season coming against the Parkites at Syne Village in round three when they hung on for a draw with nine wickets down in the second innings.
They will need more fight from their players if they are to overcome the leaders and with Denesh Ramdin, Jason Mohammed and Kavesh Kantasingh in the side, the home team will feel they have a good chance of coming out on top against a strong bowling attack led by left-arm spinner Ricky Jaipaul and pacers Marlon Richards and Atiba Allert.
The other title-chasing team Queen’s Park have found their stride with the return to form of Darren Bravo and the coming of age of teenage opening batsman Jeremy Solozano and former Under-19 left arm spinner Akeal Hosein.
They face fifth place Caldrac at Gilbert Park, California this weekend hoping to pounce on any slip-ups by Merry Boys as they try to close at the gap at the top.
SCG Premier Division Round 9 fixtures
(All matches bowl off at 10 a.m. today and continue from 9:30 a.m. tomorrow)
• First Citizens Clarke Road vs Moosai Sports, Wilson Road
• Caldrac Club vs QPCC, Gilbert Park
• Esmeralda Sports vs Munroe Road Cricket Club, Esmeralda Recreation Ground
• CLICO Preysal vs Alescon Comets, Inshan Ali Park
• Jenexcon Tableland vs Seenath's Auto Bamboo Sports, Tableland
• PowerGen Penal Sports vs Merry Boys, Syne Village
SCG Premier Division standings
Teams P W L D Pts
1. Merry Boys 8 7 0 1 194
2. QPCC 8 5 0 3 162
3. PowerGen 8 5 0 3 161
4. Clarke Road 8 3 1 4 123
5. Caldrac 8 1 3 4 104
6. Esmeralda 8 1 3 4 98
7. Comets 8 2 2 4 95
8. Munroe Road 8 3 4 1 92
9. Tableland 8 2 5 1 89
10. Preysal 8 2 4 2 86
11. Moosai 8 1 4 3 75
12. Bamboo 8 0 6 2 58