Theo Edward Recognised for Outstanding Performance in Winlott Under-15 Cricket

Team Saint Lucia champions of Winlott U-15 Cricket.
Team Saint Lucia champions of Winlott U-15 Cricket.

Saint Lucia National Under-15 captain Theo Edwards emerged as the most outstanding player of this season’s Winlott Inc. U-15 Cricket Tournament – to help his team capture the championship trophy and dethrone the defending champions, St Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG).

Theo’s brilliant performance of four consecutive centuries in the tournament was recognised as a ‘record achievement’ at last Friday’s awards ceremony, to recognise the achievements and efforts of the respective team players and their technical units.

For Theo, the tournament’s leading scorer – it was historic. He scored 198 versus Dominica, 101 vs. Grenada and 137 vs. SVG and in the final – he scored104 against SVG – a record breaking total of 540 runs in 4 matches, at an average of 135.

The young opening batter admitted that he had set himself a target of at least 200 runs for the tournament, but he eventually surpassed that figure to set a remarkable milestone in the islands’ junior cricket record books.

Last Friday’s final, at the Daren Sammy Cricket Ground [DSCG], was dubbed ‘the battle of the Saints II’ – and it was the second time in three days that SVG would come up against a dominant Team Saint Lucia.

The hosts were put in to bat – and Theo took full advantage racing to 104 off 78 balls, with 15x 4, 4×6, to set up a challenging team total of 270 in 50 overs.  Tyler Venner contributed 70 and Aaron St. Clair 38, for Saint Lucia’s lowest total in the tournament.

Team Saint Lucia had previously recorded scores of 300 + in the tournament; with 436/8, 482/8, 310/9.

SVG’s reply was promising until Saint Lucia’s leading wicket taker Leon Alexander checked the momentum taking 4 for 39 in 10 overs.

Regular losses did not help as SVG folded for 110 off 28 overs; and quite fittingly it was Theo who took a brilliant return catch off his bowling to secure victory for the home team. The youngster also contributed to his team’s victory with some tidy bowling spells throughout the tournament.

SVG coach Bertram Stapleton was disappointed that his batters were unable to chase what could have been a reasonable score.

For St. Lucia– it was just rewards for hard work, especially in the batting department which had been of some concern.

Director of Sports Jim Xavier said, the Ministry of Youth and Sports was instrumental in the team’s preparation and quite pleased with their investment in the Under-15 team.

Saint Lucia dominated with the ball – no team got to 50 overs. Alexander was the leading wicket taker – with a total of 17 wickets.

The victories were emphatic – Saint Lucia winning by 298 runs against Dominica; by 403 runs against Grenada; by 201 runs against SVG and in the final by 160 runs against SVG.

Meanwhile, Dominica finished in 3rd place with a comfortable 184 runs victory over Grenada. Earsinho Fontaine put Dominica in the driver’s seat with an exciting century off 75 balls to set up a massive total of 369 runs. Desron Mitchell with 4 wickets for 58 runs off his 10 overs was the best bowler for Grenada.

In reply, the Grenadians got to 185, with contributions of 20+ from three players. Aiden Burton picked up 4 wickets for 31 runs.

President of the St Lucia National Cricket Association [SLNCA] Julian Charles, welcomed the gathering of young cricketers, coaches and management team, and other officials at the event.

In acknowledging the talents of the youngsters, he said, it was a ‘very exciting’ tournament. Charles told the youngsters to continue working to develop their skills, since “success does not come easily, you have to work very hard as competition is stiff among your peers…and it requires a lot of dedication,” to achieve that ultimate goal. He also spoke on the importance of keeping fit to sustain healthy lifestyles, and urged the young players to “be a student of the game as much as possible, learn new things …seek advice from more mature players, and be the best cricketer that you can be.”

Referring specifically to Theo’s performance, Charles declared: “Lots will be said over the next few days, months and years to come about his four centuries …unprecedented in the annals of Windwards youth cricket.”

Winlott – has been very influential as a title sponsor for the tournament over the years as explained by its representative Wayne Auguste. He assured of the agency’s continued support in the years to come, and prospects for “bigger and better” things ahead.

Auguste added: “Winlott has been part of this tournament, since 2015 and we are very happy to continue …the Windward Islands Board has done a fantastic job with the tournament and for the first time, this year, we were part of the West Indies Rising Stars Under -19 Tournament. This shows the confidence that we have in West Indies cricket …and would like to encourage you, to continue working hard young men.”

Vice-President of Cricket West Indies (CWI) and President of the Windward Islands Cricket Association Dr. Kishore Shallow was present to commend the players for their determination and drive, while making special mention of Theo’s performance.

Said Dr. Shallow :  “With so many opportunities available in West Indies cricket , I urge you to continue playing the game, listen to your coaches, your parents, your teachers and everyone who encourages you to do positive things, to ensure that you balance your cricket and sport with education.”

At the Awards ceremony, the following players were duly recognized:

Most Runs – Theo Edwards (SLU), Most Wickets – Leon Alexander (SLU), Best Fielder – Cody Fontinelle (SLU), and

Best Wicketkeeper – Johnathan Daniel (SLU).

MVP (Dominica) – Earsinho Fontaine; MVP (Grenada) – Xzavion Rock; MVP (Saint Lucia) – Theo Edwards; and

MVP (SVG) – Jorden Charles.

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