Superb centuries from USA captain Steve Massiah and opening bat Sushil Nadkarni steered a new-look United States team to a comfortable 106 win over the Cayman Islands on the opening day of the 2006 Americas Championship in Toronto, Canada.
After being put in to bat at the Maple Leaf Cricket Club, Massiah and Nadkarni came together in the 6th over with the score on 32, and the partnership was only broken 229 runs later with the departure of Nadkarni for 111, and the total at 261 in the 46th over. The left-handed Nadkarni struck 10 fours and 2 sixes, and faced 132 balls.
Man of the match Massiah batted on to end undefeated on 136, an innings that included 16 fours and one six in 140 balls, and saw the USA innings close after 50 overs on 300 for the loss of 2 wickets.
The giant partnership of 229 for the second wicket included some superlative batting, making maximum use of an outstanding wicket and a fast outfield. The Cayman bowling attack could find no answer against an inspired blend of aggressive strokeplay, controlled ball-placing and measured running between the wickets
For the Cayman Islands, all the bowlers struggled to contain the flow of runs, with Franklin Hinds proving the most effective, conceding only 32 runs in his 10 overs.
Faced with a mammoth run chase, the Cayman batsmen showed positive intent from the start, but a succession of wickets put the USA total further and further out of reach. At 58 for 4 in the 11th over, it would have taken an effort of Herculean standards, and despite a dogged 28 from opener Steve Gordon, and determined middle-order resistance from all-rounder Hinds (33), captain Ryan Bovell with 34, and an undefeated 33 from young Jalon Linton, it was not enough.
The Cayman Islands were eventually all out in the 43rd over for 194, with best USA bowling performances coming from pacemen Imran Iwan, 3 for 47, Steve Pitter with 2 for 21, and also left-arm spinner Chintan Patel with 2 for 30 in 10 overs.
A convincing start for the USA, and they have certainly served notice with their 106 run victory that they are serious contenders for the Americas cricket crown.