A day that started with a flash of promise ended in meek surrender as T&T fell to a 192-run defeat at the hands of Jamaica yesterday, the final day of their West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) Regional Four-Day Tournament match at Queen's Park Oval.
The day started with an inkling of hope as T&T began chasing 305, with openers Justin Guillen, who top-scored with 40 (four fours, one six), and Imran Khan, 14, registering 59 for the first wicket. But with the dismissal of Guillen, T&T slid to 112 all out, their ten wickets falling for the small cost of 53 runs.
There were a couple of starts for number three batsman Marlon Barclay (15) and Khan. But the number nine seemed to be popular with several T&T batsmen, as well as extras. But there was little else, as T&T succumbed to the swing of medium pacer Dave Bernard Jr, who finished with impressive figures of seven wickets for 23 runs off just ten overs.
That result left Jamaica with a big lead atop the standings, and T&T will slip to third after Guyana embarrassed Barbados with an innings and 70-run victory.
The writing was on the wall when T&T resumed the post-match session at 86 for five. It got worse shortly after when Kevon Cooper (nine) and skipper Rayad Emrit were both removed with the score on 91.
Bernard went straight through Cooper to knock back his middle stump, and then trapped the T&T captain in front before he could score.
The procession continued with wicketkeeper/batsman Gibran Mohammed edging Bernard behind to offer his opposite number Horace Miller a catch, T&T then 111 for eight.
Bernard wrapped up the T&T innings in successive overs, as T&T's last two wickets, Sherwin Ganga (nine) and Gabriel (duck) both fell to Bernard, the former caught at midwicket, and the latter also trapped in front.
That made it five lbw decisions, a catch to the wicketkeeper, a stumping, another catch at slip and one bowled dismissal. In all, nine of ten batsmen were out to deliveries attacking the stumps, a similar phenomenon to their first innings.
A "really disappointed" Emrit attributed those statistics to a "lack of application" after the match. A little more application might have made the visitors a bit more nervous an hour and ten minutes after the start of play, when T&T posted a half-century opening stand.
Guillen, the Queen's Park Cricket Club captain, was in punishing mood early on as he cut and punched with authority any balls that offered width outside his off stump. He brought up the T&T 50 in the 14th over, a blast over midwicket for six off left-arm spinner Nikita Miller doing the trick.
But after that shot, Guillen and Khan got bogged down with Miller (N) at the Gerry Gomez Media Centre end and Odean Brown's leg-spin from the Brian Lara Pavilion end, darting in their deliveries at the stumps.
Twice they appealed for the leg before decisions off Guillen before Brown finally got it, and then Khan went next over off Nikita Miller, drawn down the pitch and beaten. Wicketkeeper Horace Miller removed the bails.
Marlon Barclay and Jason Mohammed (nine) spent 45 minutes at the crease together, rotating the strike with patience, but again they fell into the visitors' trap as Mohammed went lbw off a straighter ball from Bernard. Aneil Kanhai also made nine before he edged Bernard to Danza Hyatt at slip, and Barclay himself became the fifth victim, lbw to Miller as T&T closed for lunch on 86 for five.
Jamaica returned to mop up the tail for just 18 runs, leaving Kavesh Kantasingh, T&T's first innings bowling hero, stranded on one.
It was a finish that will no doubt leave coach Kelvin Williams and the T&T selectors scratching their heads as T&T prepare to host Shivnarine Chanderpaul and Guyana at the same venue next weekend.