Champions Tour Diary: BCA Select XI v Essex


Essex got the pre-season tour up and running on Wednesday with the first of three matches being played in Barbados over the next two weeks. Bad light brought a swift end to proceedings and although Barbados looked the most likely to take the spoils, it was some much needed time on the field for the squad in hot and humid conditions.

The match started in a peculiar fashion as three overs in, Varun Chopra was struck on the helmet. After discussion between the umpires and the two captains, it was agreed that the pitch was unfit for play. The game restarted 30 minutes later on a new pitch and the scores reset for a 45 over per side contest.

Chopra returned unfazed by the helmet strike and was joined Nick Browne, who would count himself lucky after being the only batsman to fall in the previous ‘match’.

It was Chopra to depart first this time round as Keon Harding found the edge of his bat and he was caught behind by wicket-keeper, Mario Rampersaud for 1.

Nick Browne followed suit 11 overs later as Rampersaud was called into action again, giving right-arm quick, Dario Seale his first wicket of the match.

This brought Adam Wheater to the crease to join Tom Westley, and the pair put on the best partnership of the innings (53) which included a number of fine drives from both batsmen. Westley, captaining the side for the day, brought up his half century from 70 balls and looked in fine touch. Two further boundaries from the Essex number 3 helped him to 61 before retiring out and thus giving Academy product, Feroze Khushi an opportunity to show his skills to the Coaching staff watching on from the boundary edge.

Both Wheater and Khushi would eventually go on to to retire themselves but only after a partnership of 28, which included the only maximum of the innings from Wheater (30) and an assured 23 from Khushi.

The only other wicket to fall was that of Callum Taylor, again edging behind to the keeper for 26 off 24 balls, with just an over remaining. This left Matt Coles (1) and James Foster to see the innings to a close and a knock of 24 off 29 balls from the latter saw Essex reach 207-6.

Barbados started their reply in a speedy fashion by racing to within 100 runs of the Essex total in just 16.3 overs. Former Frinton CC player, Shayne Moseley was the first wicket to fall as Sam Cook’s pace caused problems for the opener, and he subsequently edged through to Adam Wheater who shared keeping duties with James Foster.

Kyle Corbin was the pick of the home side’s batting, reaching the 50 milestone in 47 balls. His partnership with Rashidi Boucher (34) put on 72, before Aron Nijjar stepped in as the batsman found Feroze Khushi at mid-wicket.

18 year old Jack Plom impressed with figures of 1-13 off 5 overs and it was him who took the next wicket pinning Rampersaud for 19.

Callum Taylor earnt himself a big pat on the back from Head Coach Anthony McGrath, firstly dismissing Corbin (58) and then going on to take two further wickets in the match.

The game was brought to an end with Barbados requiring just 24 runs for victory but bad light saw Captains, Tom Westley and Shakeem Clarke, shake hands and move on to the next meeting on Friday at Windward Cricket Club in another one-day warm-up game.