BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, CMC – The Combined Campuses and Colleges Marooners qualified for their second final in a regional competition when they shocked title favourites Trinidad and Tobago Red Force by seven wickets in the second semifinal of the Regional Super50 at Kensington Oval here yesterday.
Led by a spectacular bowling performance by opening bowler Akeem Jordan, the Marooners eased to a comfortable victory and booked their spot in tomorrow’s final against the Guyana Jaguars.
Coincidentally, in their first ever finals appearance at the regional level back in 2013, the Marooners had also dismissed T&T for 90-odd on their way to defeating them in the semi-finals.
The dismissal of Lendl Simmons, who had come into the match with three half-centuries under his belt prompted an unimaginable batting collapse by the Red Force.
After scoring just two runs, Simmons was deceived by a beautiful delivery outside offstump from pacer Jermaine Levy, which he could only edge behind to wicketkeeper Amir Jangoo to leave the score three for one. In his second over and the third of the match, Jordan struck three times within the space of five balls, to derail the Red Force’s innings.
In his second ball of the over, Jordan tempted Sunil Narine to fish outside his offstump to be caught behind by Jangoo for one without a run being added to the score and three balls later Jason Mohammed was undone by a beautiful outswinger to be out for a duck and give Jangoo his third catch of the innings.
Captain Denesh Ramdin only lasted one ball, chipping Jordan’s last ball of the over to Nicholas Kirton at mid-on, as the Red Force slumped to three for four.
Nicholas Pooran scored nine before his attempted wild slash only resulted in a catch behind to Jangoo as Jordan grabbed his fourth wicket.
Jordan then capped off his spell with a perfectly bowled inswinger to remove the offstump of Darren Bravo after the left-hander had shouldered arms to leave the score 25 for six.
Veterans Dwayne Bravo, who topscored with 27 and Kieron Pollard (16) – two of only three batsmen to score in double figures – then tried to steady the Red Force during a seventh wicket partnership of 33.
But once Pollard holed out to long-on as he tried to clear the ropes the end came swiftly, as 58 for seven soon became 66 for eight when Bravo could only steer Carlos Brathwaite’s high bouncer to square leg where Jonathan Drakes took an easy catch.
Rayad Emrit’s unbeaten knock of 15 threatened briefly to carry them over the 100-mark, before he ran out of partners.
The Marooners then made light work of their target, despite losing two early wickets.
Opener Kyle Corbin edged a defensive prod to first slip where Dwayne Bravo took a stunning one-handed catch to his right off the bowling of Sunil Narine with the score on three, and Jangoo was caught at long-on by Emrit running back for 11, as CCC stumbled to 29 for two.
However, once Drakes was dismissed, opener Kjorn Ottley who stroked an unbeaten 39 and Brathwaite who finished on 29 not out off just 22 balls, carried the Marooners to victory in under 17 overs.