JERSEY came into their World Cup Challenge against gli Azzurri buoyed by comfortable back-to-back wins against Uganda and Kenya.
Their first European opposition of the series, however, were keen to stick the Islanders under immediate pressure.
Italy captain Gareth Berg stormed out the Kyambogo gates removing both Jersey openers Nick Greenwood and Harrison Carlyon within his first four overs.
The ice-cool Berg also removed Ben Stevens for just two runs, while Jonty Jenner fell for a duck to J. Singh.
Jersey needed a calm head to steady the ship. Enter 19-year-old Josh Lawrenson, who stayed the course to score the first Caesarean century of the series and help salvage a 223 total, aided by some handy work from Dom Blampied, who scored 37.
Jersey’s bowling attack was this time spearheaded by the eventual man-of-the-match Julius Sumerauer, who could not be stopped from taking a staggering six wickets off 7.3 overs bowled.
Spinner Elliot Miles also found Kyambogo happy hunting – he claimed three wickets of his own for just 29 runs in a ten-over spell.
The European team did get some brief joy from Manpreet Singh and Gian-Piero Meade in at three and four, but that was short-lived.
Once those two walked, Jersey set about dismantling the tail, which they duly did – reducing Italy to 135 all out and securing an 88-run win.
Sumerauer said: ‘I struggled in my first spell and I think they batted pretty well during the early stages.
‘We kept the pressure on in the field and eventually I think it proved too much.’
Captain Chuggy Perchard was delighted with the result, but was keen to highlight the importance of their next game, against high-flying Hong Kong.
‘It was a tough game. I think Italy set a great standard up front,’ he said.
‘Lawro’s [Lawrenson] knock was one of the finest we have seen in a Jersey shirt.
‘We are happy so far, but it’s far from job done yet. If Hong Kong turn us over we are back behind the eight ball.’
It was a nightmare start for Jersey, who were four wickets down before the 12th over, as star batsmen Greenwood, Jenner and Stevens amassed only seven runs between them.
With Jersey sitting at 35/4, Blampied arrived at the crease.
The experienced Blampied and young Lawrenson would form a formidable pair and total 99 together before the finger was raised at Blampied, as the ball struck his front pad.
Lawrenson however, would stay in for the remainder of the innings and score a vital 102 off 129 deliveries for the Islanders – surviving many wickets among his peers.
The teenage batsman achieved his century in the final over and raised his bat towards his teammates.
Elliot Miles would put on a show of his own as a lovely ramp shot found the boundary late on – which set a score of 223 for the Caesareans to protect.
Italy knew they had a workable target and set about playing their way into the innings, with no concern at the required run-rate.
As it was, however, Kyambogo has proved to be a hard wicket to earn runs on, thus Jersey were looking to keep up their stellar bowling work to claim the win.
They would also take confidence from the fact that no team had surpassed their first innings score when chasing
The Islanders remained patient however, and were stingy in giving up runs – all while grabbing the occasional wicket to keep Italy honest.
Neil MacRae’s men knew they would need to be superb in the field and with the ball and they did just that.
Openers Nikolai Smith and Joy Perera walked for 12 and one respectively before next men up, Singh and Meade frustrated the bowlers reaching 26 and 42.
Sumerauer’s patience paid off, removing both men in quick succession.
Italy failed to stem the bleeding and slipped from 98/3 to 130/8 – as the rate crept above a run a ball for the first time to add insult to injury.
It didn’t take the Caesareans long to polish things off, claiming all ten wickets within 37 overs .