ICC Americas Media Release
Chile powered to an impressive 8 wicket win over the Turks & Caicos Islands at Hurlingham today, thereby recording their second straight win, and placing themselves in a very strong to clinch the Division 3 title in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
If their win over Belize the previous day had an element of tightness to it, todays win was as emphatic as they come. Turks & Caicos Islands earlier totalled a respectable 252 all out in 47, 4 overs, but it turned out to be nowhere near enough as man of the match Paul Wollocombe recorded Chile's second century in as many days, a fine unbeaten 104, scored off 134 balls, with 10 fours, and with outstanding support from captain Simon Shalders, 69 from 65 balls, 10 fours, and Guy Hooper, 43 not out from 48 balls, 5 fours, reached their winning target of 253 for the loss of only 2 wickets with 7 overs to spare.
Earlier, the aggressive Turks & Caicos batting had surged to 162 for 3 at the 30 over mark, thanks to an excellent 68 from Donavan Matthews, from 72 balls including 10 fours, as well as 39 (46 balls, 3 fours) from Terrence Thomas, and looked set for a huge total. However, thanks to some tidy bowling, and exceptional fielding and catching, the Caribbean side could only add a further 90 runs. Pick of the bowlers was Tim Messner, with 3 for 41 in 7,4 overs, while Shalders weighed in with 2 for 15.
In reply, Chile lost their first wicket in the 5th over with the total on 23, which brought the prolific Shalders to the crease to join Wollocombe, and together the two batsmen batted with a mixture of caution and aggression to clearly rest any initiative away from the Turks & Caicos Islands. By the time Shalders was out lbw for 69 in the 29th over, the pair had taken the score to 162 with a fine partnership of 137.
Still, with another 91 required, there might have been thoughts of nerves, but there was to be none of that from the confident Hooper, who combined with Wollocombe and saw him through to a deserved century in an unbroken third wicket partnership, and victory with 42 balls to spare. Turks & Caicos skipper Ralph Doughty tried everything to break the Chilean dominance, including using nine bowlers, but on the day ultimately there was no answer to the Chilean batting.
Chile have now beaten the two teams technically seeded above them, and will be confident of securing a first ICC tournament title, as well as promotion to Division 2. However, they will need to remain wary of their remaining South American rivals standing in their path. Brasil can never be written off with potential match-winners Matt Featherstone and Rubabal Islam in their ranks, while Peru will welcome talismanic captain Harry Hildebrand back to their line-up as from today. At St.Alban's Club, the Brazilians threw away a golden opportunity to claim a first ever ICC victory when they allowed Belize to recover from 88 for 7 in the 22nd over to reach 194 all out in 46,5 overs. Destroyer in chief was seamer Ravi Chanchlani, who bowled intelligently in humid conditions to record outstanding figures of 5 for 40 in his 10 overs. Jeetu Khemani weighed in with 2 for 20, and in the early stages there was some excellent fielding and catching from the Brazilian outfielders.
Belize were rescued by captain Dirk Sutherland, who produced a fine innings of 63, off 62 balls with 6 fours and 4 sixes, to lead his side away from disaster and towards a total of some respectability. He was well aided by a tenacious Andrew Banner, 28 off 74 balls, with 2 fours and 2 sixes, and together they added an invaluable and ultimately match-winning 89 runs for the 8th wicket.
Still, with some powerful batting at the top of their order, most would have felt the game was very much there for Brasil to win, and at 26 for 1 after 6 overs, perhaps even more so. But the departure of skipper Featherstone marked the start of an extraordinary and disastrous collapse, and Brasil were all out for a woeful 55 in the 23rd over, handing victory to Belize by 139 runs. Howell Gillett returned the best figures for Belize with 4 for 10 in 4,5 overs, while Warren Anthony took 2 for 25 and Kene Broaster 2 for 6.
After their first day loss to Chile, pre-tournament favourites Belize will perhaps feel they have got their tournament underway now with this win, although it may prove to be ultimately a day too late after Chile's win today. Still, it is cricket, and Belize will no doubt be aiming to win their remaining two matches and trust in a Chilean slip-up along the line. For Brasil, and Turks & Caicos Islands, their clash tomorrow is a must-win for both sides if they are to have any further chance of winning the title, while Chile will be looking to put further distance between themselves and the rest of the pack when they take on Peru.