June 5, 2015
No letting up from Team Rivals

Local cricket units which are plotting to topple Team Rivals from the pinnacle of the National Lotteries Authority Premier Division of the national cricket programme must ensure that their plans are detailed and precise.{{more}}

This, as the four in a row winners have indicated that they are not in the mood to let up on their hold, at least not just yet.

The man who has been at the helm in the consecutive victories, Olanzo Jackson, embraces the 2015 win with some delight.

Jackson cherishes this year’s win in light of the fact that for the latter part of the competition, they had to do it without three of the premier batsmen — Hyron Shallow, Casmond Walters and Marvin Small.

“The guys who went off, we really wanted to do it for them, so Butler (Deighton) and I decided to pull the youngsters together and we won,” Jackson related to SEARCHLIGHT.

Shallow is presently in the USA, playing in the Brooklyn Cricket League, while Walters and Small are in England.

Also missing for a greater part of the season, were fast bowler Kesrick Williams and spinner Asif Hooper, who went off to England and Barbados, respectively.

Jackson said that one of the underpinning reasons for Rivals’ prolonged success has been “to maintain a positive mind frame, teamwork and to always play good cricket.”

A long-standing member of the team, Jackson, who is nearing the end of his local competitive cricket career, however plans to soldier on, despite a chronic knee problem.

Jackson noted that Rivals plan to “go out hard in the first set of matches, as we most likely will not have our key players, as they should be returning overseas.”

Jackson and his team over the years owe much of Rivals’ continuity to founder and manager Carlos Veira.

Team Rivals, in this year’s tourney, registered four outright wins, won one on first innings, had one match rained out and lost their final fixture last weekend to Guardian General Saints on first innings match, to finish on 131 points.

Before completing the four in a row, Team Rivals captured the title in 2012, but had to share it with Victors One in 2013 and did it all alone in 2014.

Rivals, in 2013, completed the treble, adding the inaugural Super-40 and the Twenty/20 competitions to the premier division title.

Last year, Rivals also retained the Super-40 and earlier this year, took away the Twenty/20 competition again.

Rivals have emerged from the Richmond Hill Club, which was formed in 1973.(RT)