Battleground set - St Mary, JDF to square off in JCA 50 over final
Defending champions St Mary's eight-run semi-final victory over Kensington Cricket Club on Saturday allows them another chance to retain the Jamaica Cricket Association 50 Over title.
St Mary will face the Jamaica Defence Force (JDF), who got by Kingston Cricket Club by three wickets in the other semi-final at Up Park Camp.
At Kensington Park, the home side won the toss and decided to field, and that decision looked dicey when the St Mary openers Alwyn Williams and Orlando Lyons put on 107 runs for the first wicket.
It took skipper Ryan Francis, with his left-arm spin, to break the partnership when he had Williams caught by Nicholson Gordon for 73 off 67 balls. The national left-hander had hit eight fours and two sixes in his swift knock.
Lyons and Tyrone Daley kept the scoreboard ticking over, however, Daley also fell to Francis for 32 to leave St Mary on 132 for two.
Sheldon Pryce and wicket-keeper Anthony Walters both got into the twenties to help push the visitors over the 200 mark, but a couple of run-outs and some good death bowling from Daniel Griffith kept St Mary to 238 all out in 47 overs and a ball.
Griffith finished with three wickets for 17 runs while Francis bagged three wickets for 29 runs. Delbert Gayle chipped in with two wickets for 37 runs.
In reply, Kensington got a brilliant start from National opener Leroy Lugg and Francis, with the duo adding 76 runs for the first wicket.
Francis was the first to go, caught behind for six off medium-pacer Williams.
Lugg continued to play aggressively and blasted his way to 111 from just 60 balls with 14 fours and six sixes.
When Lugg became the fourth wicket to fall with the score on 158, the remaining Kensington batters could not maintain the momentum, and in the end, came close, to fall short by eight runs. Alex Hinds chipped in with 20, as pacer Jermaine Chisolm bagged four wickets for 30 runs and Sheldon Pryce took three wickets for 31 runs.
Over at Up Park Camp, JDF also sent their opponents Kingston in to take the first strike, and the Tigers posted 267 all out in 49 overs and a ball. Former National player Garth Garvey top scored with 74, while opener Geordae Seymour made 49.
National fast bowler Gordon Bryan bagged four wickets for 52 runs while there were two wickets each for Leighton Leslie and Andre Dennis.
In reply, JDF had opener Tevin Gilzene to thank for their successful run chase, as he hit an unbeaten 131 from 157 balls to see them home. Gilzene hit five fours and seven sixes, as the army men replied with 268 for seven. Everton O'Haro took three wickets for 44 runs for Kingston.