Captain Jason Holder has showered praised on the Barbados Pride bowling unit, after they played a key role in helping the side lift the Regional Super50 title here Saturday night.
The triumphant Barbados Pride squad returned home Sunday from Antigua and were met by an official welcoming party led by Minister of Sport Stephen Lashley.
Defending 272 at the Coolidge Cricket Ground on the weekend, Pride held Jamaica Scorpions to 212 all out in the 45th over, to come away with a 59-run victory.
Left-arm spinner Sulieman Benn spearheaded the attack with three for 33 from his 10 overs while seamers Holder (2-28), Carlos Brathwaite (2-43) and Kemar Roach (2-54) all claimed two wickets each.
Off-spinner Ashley Nurse, who finished as the tournament’s leading wicket-taker with 26 scalps, managed just one wicket but was instrumental throughout.
“Our bowlers were outstanding all tournament long, led by Ashley, I thought he was outstanding,” Holder said.
“He wasn’t at his best today but that’s what a good team does – they pick up the slack when one of the other teammates is down. I thought Sulieman had an outstanding game and bowled extremely well. He got three crucial wickets for us and that’s what he was in the team to do – take wickets. Credit must be given to the entire bowling department and also our fielders. I thought we held our catches.”
Holder produced a superb attacking innings in helping to set up Pride’s win, hammering an explosive 47-ball 69 to propel his side to 271 for nine off their 50 overs.
He put on a 127-run, sixth wicket stand with Shai Hope who carved out 101 from 98 deliveries, to post his second straight hundred following his 125 in the semi-final against Leeward Islands Hurricanes last Thursday.
Pride were languishing at 138 for five in the 35th over when Holder and Hope joined forces, and the West Indies Test and one-day skipper said the partnership had been a crucial one in reviving the innings.
“When I went in to bat with Shai, I thought it was important for us to get a partnership and I just needed to be positive as well,” he explained.
“There was no point me going out there and trying to soak up balls and put pressure back on us. It was a period where I had to consolidate a bit but still had to remain positive and it was important that I kept instilling confidence in Shai and made it easier for him by rotating the strike.
“I was able to do that and I was also able to launch. But again, Shai Hope was absolutely outstanding and must be given credit for the way he’s played in the tournament. He didn’t have the best of starts but he finished the back end – the most important part of the tournament – really well.”
Hope finished with 482 runs, Test opener Kraigg Brathwaite scored 484 while Holder gathered 213 runs and also picked up 18 wickets.
Holder said Pride had been the best side throughout the tournament and deserved the success.
“I thought the guys were very, very consistent all tournament long, we put in the performance needed to win this final and I don’t think a better team could have come up and won this final so congrats to the Barbados Pride team and everyone who would have contributed to this.”