Couva East Secondary, led by former Trinidad and Tobago Under-15 vice-captain Saiba Batoosingh, will be looking to maintain their unbeaten run this season when they face St Benedict’s College in the PowerGen Secondary Schools Cricket League (SSCL) Seniors Twenty20 final at Pierre Road in Charlieville from 6.30 p.m. today.
The SSCL Senior’s T20 will be the second match of a double header today which will also feature the first SSCL North versus South hard-ball T20 game which is set to bowl off at 3.30 p.m.
In the boys’ competition, Batoosingh has already led his school to the League crown to earn promotion to the Championship Division and now he will have his eyes set on T20 glory.
But St Benedict’s are motivated to succeed. The Karon Boodram-led side lost to Couva in the National League quarter-final and will be looking for retribution. But St Benedict’s also want to win to honour the memory of former skipper Tevin Robertson, who died in a car accident earlier this year.
Robertson led the school to the seniors T20 crown in 2011 and the current squad has two players who would have featured in that final—leg-spinner Boodram and left-arm orthodox spinner Rennie Lutchman.
This year, the South team beat North senior division champions Mucurapo East Secondary in the national quarter-final at Honeymoon Park in El Dorado with former national Under-15 batsman Vishal Gunness hitting a half-century.
St Benedict’s went on to beat South West winners Fyzabad Secondary in the semi-final with their skipper taking four wickets for 15 runs and Jabari Mills snatching three for six.
Couva East defeated Manzanilla Secondary in their quarter-final fixture before overcoming Moruga Secondary by seven runs in the semi-final at Avidesh Samaroo Park in Endeavour, Chaguanas.
On their way to clinching the League title, Couva East registered victories of St Benedict’s, Manzanilla, and Mucurapo in the quarter-final, semi-final, and final respectively.
The girls also take centre stage today for a hard-ball T20 match which will feature some of the best female cricketers from schools across the country.
The two teams were selected following the inaugural SSCL Girls’ Hardball InterZone Competition which was won by the East Zone girls who defeated Central in the final.
It was the first time the SSCL held the competition which featured seven zones which also included North, North-East, South, South-East and South-West.
Twenty-six girls who took part in the SSCL Hardball Competition were selected to continue training to be part of today’s North versus South match.
Among the girls in action today are Cunupia Secondary’s Rosemary Samaroo and Bernadine Parris, who were part of the SSCL Girls Open final last Friday against Cedros Secondary. They will be part of the North team, while Cedros Secondary skipper Rashne Deojit will be part of the South team.
SSCL president Surujdath Mahabir said the League is hoping to make the North versus South game an annual fixture as they work towards introducing hard-ball in the girls’ schools cricket competition.
SSCL Boys Seniors T20 Final Squads:
St Benedict’s College—Karon Boodram (captain), Jabari Grey, Vishal Gunness, Arvinda Roopchan, Jabari Mills, Kwasi John, Renile Jagoo, Jamari Warrick, Rennie Lutchman, Daniel Assoon, Taryl Coutou, Renaldo Samai, Leeron Peters. Amin Forgenie (coach/manager).
Couva East Secondary—Saiba Batoosingh (captain), Nicholas Bachan, Seyon Lalla, Shawn Pulchan, Christon Deo, Brandon Greene, Keenan Garcia, Anthony Marchan, Adrian Rambally, Jared Samaroo, Emrith Reesal, Shivan Mahabir, Nicholas Barclay. Ramesh Maharaj (coach), Rajendra Dilraj (manager).
Girls’ North vs South Squads:
North—Reniece Boyce, Khadijah Rahim, Alysha Gomez, Makeni Thomas, Rosemary Samaroo, April Ramoutar, Alyssa Mano, Atiya Lara, Shenice John, Kadiesha Bonas, Shanaya Balliram, Shania Augustus, Nicolette Craig, Bernadine Parris, Alissia Villafana.
South—Rashne Deojit, Amanda John, Onika Alexander, Tarlsha Padarath, Patrina Walcott, Shania Abdool, Reanna Farrow, Shanta Roopchan, Renelle Dookie, Leandra Ramdeen, Kimberly Khan, Ray-Ann Celestine, Amanda Nanan, Annaleah Ganga, Sarah Ramnanan.