Opener Lendl Simmons’ 42 backed up by some fine spin bowling from Veerasammy Permaul and Sunil Narine, helped the Amazon Warriors script a 19-run win over visitors Trinidad and Tobago’s Red Steel in the Amazon Warriors’ first home match at the Guyana National Stadium, Providence last night.
In front of a sold out crowd, the visitors won the toss and elected to field and the Warriors chalked up an imposing 155 for 5 of their allotted 20 overs. Simmons and fellow opener Martin Guptill got the team off to a flier adding 74 runs for the first wicket.
Guptill was the first to head back to the dugout after being trapped lbw by Samuel Badree for an aggressive 32 off 21 deliveries which featured three boundaries and a six. The Pakistan T20 skipper, Mohammad Hafeez then joined Simmons who had already had his eyes in.
After hitting a run-a-ball 14, Hafeez was caught by Ross Taylor off the bowling of Kevin O’Brien allowing James Franklin to come to the crease with the score 98 for two. Simmons and Franklin then brought up the team’s 100 in 14.3 overs.
Simmons duly departed to his countryman and opposition skipper, Dwayne Bravo for a well played 42.
Then came a middle order mini collapse.
Christopher Barnwell walked out to the middle to a rock-star reception from the sold out crowd. However, the crowd was soon silenced after Barnwell flicked a ball to square-leg fielder Suleiman Benn who made no mistake in completing the catch while Narsingh Deonarine was run out for one. At 106 for 5, in came the Amazon Warriors Captain Ramnaresh Sarwan with the intention of taking his team to a defendable score. The two, Sarwan and Franklin took the bowlers to the bleachers smashing sixes and fours in the last four overs. Sarwan ended with 17 from 11 balls while Franklin’s 20-ball cameo yielded 26 runs with three big sixes.
The Red Steel bowlers were expensive with the skipper Bravo being the most costly yielding 41 runs from his four overs but picking up two wickets in the process while O’Brien 1 for 14 and Badree 1 for 30, were the other wicket takers.
Needing 7.75 runs per over to record their first win of the tournament, the Red Steel opening pair of Davy Jacobs and Justin Guillen started off quietly in their quest.
Guillen was the first to go as he found himself trapped lbw by Hafeez for 22.
Jacobs soon followed when he was bowled by left-arm spinner Veerasammy Permaul for 10.
The dangerous Taylor was soon back in the pavilion when Permaul had him lbw for 2 but young Nicholas Pooran and Darren Bravo, provided the sold-out crowd with an exhibition of six hitting.
Pooran was put down by Sunil Narine off the first ball of his over and added insult to that injury by immediately hammering his country-man for a huge six. The two added 40 runs from just 4.3 overs.
Krishmar Santokie made a vital breakthrough in the 15th over when he had Bravo caught behind by wicket-keeper Denesh Ramdin for 23. His elder brother and skipper, Dwayne came to the crease with his team needing 63 runs from 32 balls.
Pooran, who was leading a charmed existence, was given another life by Guptill who spilled a difficult chance off the bowling of Permaul.
The skipper Bravo (8) was then dismissed caught by Barnwell off the bowling of his fellow Trinidadian Narine but Pooran continued his merry way silencing the crowd by bringing up his 50 from just 20 deliveries. He practically went berserk on Narine and Permaul hammering them for sixes, but finally his luck ran out and he was caught on the long off boundary by Hafeez for a belligerent 54 off 24 balls an innings which included one four and six massive sixes.
But the Red Steel was not done yet. O’ Brien took a liking to Permaul who tossed one middle and leg and was duly dispatched into the “Red Stand”.
But the Red Steel kept losing wickets.
Kevon Cooper was involved in a mix up and was run out by Santokie for nought while O’ Brien was bowled by Santokie for 8. With the score 136 for 8 and needing 20 runs from the last over, Benn was bowled by Narine for a duck and Narine subsequently finished off the over beautifully with two dot balls as the Red Steel were left high and dry on 136 for 9.
At the post match presentation Amazon Warriors’ Santokie was named Player of the Match.