Jamaica Tallawahs (147-8) beat Barbados Tridents (128-6) by 19 runs
The Jamaica Tallawahs kept pace with the leaders of the Limacol Caribbean Premier League thanks to victory over the Barbados Tridents at Sabina Park. A noisy home crowd saw a professional performance from their team as they defended a decent but not daunting total.
Chris Gayle was in the runs once again but the star performers for the Tallawahs were Owais Shah with the bat and Jerome Taylor with the ball. Shoaib Malik played a lone hand for the Tridents but his phenomenal 81 off 42 balls was not enough to bring his side victory. The Tallawahs got off to a flying start with Chadwick Walton hitting the first ball for four. Expensive overs from Ashley Nurse and Shoaib Malik saw the home side reach 34-0 at the end of the fourth. Some control was reasserted by Jason Holder and Ravi Rampaul as they combined to bowl two overs for just three runs as the Tallawahs were restricted to 37-1 by the end of the Powerplay. The man to depart inside the first six overs was Walton who fell LBW to Rampaul who further extended his lead at the top of the wicket taking charts.
The home side made it to the tenth over without further loss but the run rate continued to fall. Nurse and Malik were costly with the ball but the seamers especially Holder kept the scoring down to well under a run a ball. Shah really struggled to time the ball early on, as he has throughout his time in this year’s Limacol Caribbean Premier League but the longer he remained in the middle the more fluent he became. Chris Gayle also saw the halfway point as the moment to accelerate hitting a towering six off Rayad Emrit to finally get his innings going.
The platform had been set but both of these batsmen had to make the most of it. Boundaries were the order of the day especially as both Gayle and Shah are not quick runners between the wickets. At the start of the 15th over both men were scoring at less than a run a ball. Shah went about fixing that as he hit Holder for two sixes in a row. Shah fell in the next over attempting another six but he had done his job for the finishers to come. Unfortunately for the Tallawahs no one could take up the mantle.
Andre Russell arrived at the crease fresh from a heroic performance in his last match but he could not replicate his efforts as he skied a ball from Rampaul to the legside into the waiting hands of Kieron Pollard. The Tridents fast bowler continued his wicket taking form two balls later as he removed Adam Voges for a golden duck. Rampaul finished with four wickets in the innings to leave him well clear of the other bowlers as the man with the most victims.
When Gayle departed before the end it left the lower order with a lot to do. That only led to more wickets falling as the new men found scoring quickly a big ask. They were 120 for two at the fall of Russell’s wicket. In the next four overs they scored just 27 runs for the loss of six wickets.
Despite the late order collapse this was still the highest total that had been set at Sabina Park in this year’s tournament. There was work for the Tridents to do. That task was made all the more difficult when Dwayne Smith was well caught in the gully by Jerome Taylor in the first over. Smith is having a feast or famine tournament with two centuries and three scores in single figures.
Shane Dowrich could have been out twice in three balls as he first fended a ball from Jerome Taylor that was nearly caught by Christopher Bernard. Then he set off for a single that was never there and had Taylor hit the stumps he would have been gone by half the pitch. He just could not find a way to score runs finally falling to a poor shot outside off stump having made just nine runs off 24 balls.
At the half way stage the Tridents looked to be struggling to get anywhere near the target but Shoaib Malik seemed to be finding some timing after playing himself in hitting the first six of the innings in the tenth over. The problem was that the required rate was now close to 10 an over and Taylor still had half his allocation left to bowl.
Neil McKenzie was playing the anchor role for Malik but he should have been dismissed on eight when Gayle failed to claim a simple chance in the covers off Nikita Miller. The bowler had the last laugh as he bowled the South African two balls later to leave the Tridents 69 for four with seven and a half overs to go.
When Pollard walked out to the crease his side were up against it needing 11 runs an over with six wickets in hand. Despite swinging hard he too found it difficult to judge the pace of this Jamaican pitch. He mistimed a pull shot off Russell that was caught at third man.
The return of Taylor into the bowling attack ended the match as a contest, finishing with outstanding figures of two for 11. In the last two matches he has been near unplayable. Malik was a class apart for the visitors, but without any telling support even his stellar performance was not enough.
The Tridents are certain of being involved in the knockout stages of the event now but it is looking increasingly likely they will have to win both knock out games to make the final as this defeat leaves them in fourth place. For the Tallawahs automatic qualification for the final remains a realistic target.