The expected thriller between Police and Esso did not materialise sadly because the rain interrupted the game, but on balance Police deservedly won.
They could even afford to be without Pearson Best, Cayman’s supreme batsman as they cruised through to the final of the Money Express Knockout, winning by seven wickets on the Duckworth-Lewis scoring system.
The match was already reduced to 28 overs because of a late start caused by a water-logged pitch. In went Esso and 15-year-old opener Darren Cato showed maturity beyond his years to hit an impressive 27. There were solid knocks too by Franklin Hinds (21), Sam Suberan (24) and Clive Salesman (24) but was their 149 enough against a formidable line up? Police skipper Ryan Bovell took 4-18 with a mixture of fast bowling and spin. Pretty versatile, eh? He even hit 30 not out to take the man of the match award.
In a match umpired by Courtney Young and Barbara Chambers, the weather was always going to be a factor, so Police ensured they started quickly. Teenage sensation Ramon Sealy was just as accomplished as Cato as an opener. He was dropped without scoring and went on to hit a fine 32 until run out by a majestic piece of fielding by Euven Bryan.
Sealy top scored for Police. He is only 16 and when he captains the Under-19s in Canada next week at the World Cup qualifiers, he looks capable of fully taking on the responsibility. His father Ricardo is the team manager. He said: ‘Ramon is an opening bat and wicket-keeper and will have a lot of responsibility on his shoulders but I think he can handle it.’
Bovell said: ‘That obviously wasn’t the way we wanted to beat Esso but I think we would have scored the necessary 40 runs in six overs anyway. We will be playing Prison in the final and I think it will go our way again. We have a good young squad and good balance. We didn’t even have Pearson Best today. Prison think they’ve got the island’s best batsman in Saheed Mohamed but no one else this season has hit five division centuries back to back like Best. He’s a consistent campaigner for Cayman too. They also believe that the over rate wasn’t correctly worked out when we beat them last time. They shouldn’t blame any miscalculation; it was bad cricket on their part.’