Bermuda’s High Performance team ended their three-match tour of Canada with a 17-run defeat in a high-scoring match yesterday.
Winning the toss and opting to bat, Canada Select posted 296 for seven in their 50 overs, but it was not an easy victory for them as Bermuda took their run chase down to the wire before being dismissed for 279 with five balls remaining.
Bermuda coach Clay Smith admits to being both pleased and disappointed that they got so close to victory.
“We lost a tough one that I truly feel we should have won,” he said last night. “We were well placed but our inexperience showed. However I am extremely pleased at our run chase, the way we went about it.”
Okera Bascome seems to have found a new batting position at the top of the order for Bermuda, after a tour-best 88 from 68 balls kept them on course in their run chase after captain Terryn Fray was bowled by Asad Rehman in the second over with only four runs on the board.
Bascome and Tre Manders (36) then shared in a century partnership (129) for the second wicket before Manders departed in the 21st over. He faced 59 balls and hit four fours playing a supporting role to Bascome, who stroked ten fours and three sixes. However, Bascome joined Manders back in the pavilion two overs later, leaving Bermuda 134 for three after 22.2 overs.
Stovell produced his best knock of the tour, 59 off 63 balls with seven fours and a six, as he shared a fifth-wicket partnership of 45 with veteran Janeiro Tucker, who came to the crease at a crucial stage, 20.2 overs remaining and 127 runs needed for victory.
Tucker was crucially run out in the 37th over on 254 for six and Stovell departed five overs later.
“Okera and Tre batted well to put us in an excellent position,” Smith said. “Okera batted superbly, then Dion took over. I thought Dion and Janeiro were going to win it for us but Janeiro’s run-out was massive.
“Again, to come so close was pleasing because the whole process of the run chase was excellent up until the last ten overs. We will definitely learn and grow from this, but I am very proud of the team overall.
“This tour has been a success overall as some players grew tremendously and will stake a claim for the future.”
With three overs remaining Bermuda still needed 25 runs for victory but only had two wickets in hand, Christof van Tonder being the last of the recognised batsmen.
Chare Smith was ninth out on the last ball of the 48th over and Jordan Smith was run out with five balls remaining and Bermuda still 18 runs short of victory.
Farhan Malik claimed three for 55 off his ten overs and Rommel Shahzad two for 33 from nine.
Opener Akashi Gill was high man for Canada with 54 from 71 balls and off four fours and two sixes. He and Ayoub Zai (26) put on 57 for the first wicket in 9.5 overs to lay the foundation for the big total. Gill and S. Thurasingham added 50 for the second wicket to bring up the 100 before Thurasingham and Arsian Khan (44) added 64 for the third wicket before Thurasingham departed at the end of the 33rd over when the score was 171 for three.
Bermuda then picked up four more wickets for 82 runs before an unbroken eighth-wicket stand of 43 took Canada to 296. Chare Smith was the only Bermuda bowler to take more than one wicket as the Canada innings included three run-outs.