SUPER50 FINAL: Shaky Jamaica start
PROVIDENCE, Guyana, CMC – Jamaica stumbled early, after stingy bowling from left-arm spinner Nikita Miller helped them dismiss Trinidad & Tobago cheaply in the Final of the Regional Super50 tournament on Saturday.
The Jamaicans reached 24 for two from nine overs at the interval with their captain and talismanic West Indies batsman Chris Gayle not out on nine and Danza Hyatt not on one, replying to T&T’s 118 all out from 46.1 overs on a hard, true Guyana National Stadium pitch under bright, sunny skies.
This followed a miserly spell from Miller that put Jamaica in control. He grabbed three wickets for 19 runs from his allotment of 12 overs.
Jason Mohammed continued to lead the T&T batting, hitting the top score of 32, but no other batsman reached 20 after the Red Force decided to bat.
Andre Russell stepped up in the face of unusually wayward bowling from Krishmar Santokie, when he removed opener Justin Guillen for eight and William Perkins for seven, leaving T&T 21 for two in the eighth over.
Miller bowled Dwayne Bravo for one with a unplayable ball that turned and knocked out the off-stump, and then trapped T&T captain Daren Ganga lbw for seven, leaving the Red Force giddy on 30 for four.
Mohammed, T&T’s most prolific batsman in the tournament, joined Sherwin Ganga at the crease and put on 44 for the fifth wicket to stem the fall of wickets.
Gayle, bowling his uncomplicated off-spin, made the breakthrough however, when he trapped Ganga lbw for 19, leaving T&T 74 for five – and they never fully recovered although they limped over the 100-run threshold.
Rusell ended with two for 10 from seven overs, Gayle snatched two for 31 from 10 overs, and Odean Brown bagged two for 34 from 11.1 overs.
T&T were unchanged, but the Jamaicans brought Hyatt in to replace Jermaine Blackwood.
T&T prevailed over hosts Guyana by four wickets last Wednesday at this venue in the first semi-final, after they were second in Group-B behind Jamaica with 12 points.
Jamaica survived a scare from the West Indies High Performance Centre to claim a one-wicket victory with one ball remaining in the second semi-final last Thursday at the same venue.
The two teams are playing for the Clive Lloyd Trophy in honour of the former Guyana and West Indies captain, now West Indies Cricket Board director.