CPL

Brandon King's magnificent 89 propels Jamaica Tallawahs to victory as CPL bowls off in St Kitts

By Sports Desk September 01, 2022
Brandon King's magnificent 89 propels Jamaica Tallawahs to victory as CPL bowls off in St Kitts CPL

A new look Jamaica Tallawahs got their 2022 Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) campaign off to a winning start with a 47-run victory over the defending champions, St Kitts & Nevis Patriots.

The Patriots won the toss and opted to field first but the decision backfired as a sparkling 89 off 57 balls from Brandon King led the way for the Tallawahs who set an imposing 183-2 from their 20 overs. In reply, the Patriots fell to a sizable defeat losing wickets in regular clusters as the Tallawahs put on an excellent display in the field to back up their performance with the bat.

The Tallawahs had got off to a circumspect start with Duan Jansen bowling a beautiful three-over opening spell. However once Brandon King got into his groove the runs started to flow. He took 14 and 19 runs, respectively, off Akila Dananjaya and Jon Russ Jaggesar to ensure the Tallawahs ended the PowerPlay on 48-0.

Whilst King was timing the ball well, the same could not be said for his opening partner Kennar Lewis. Normally a powerful striker of the ball, Lewis struggled in his time at the crease but had lady luck on his side. Twice he should have been run out but Sherfane Rutherford and Dewald Brevis failed to execute before Andre Fletcher and Jansen also dropped Lewis. Lewis benefitted from those misses to help put on a 100-run partnership with King before he eventually fell for 48 off the bowling of Jaden Carmichael.

That wicket brought Tallawahs captain, Rovman Powell, to the crease and he added a quickfire 30* from 15 balls at the death to ensure the Tallawahs set a match-winning target. Although much like Lewis he benefitted from two dropped catches along the way.

The Patriots were never really in the game in their reply as scoreboard pressure told.

Evin Lewis, Dewald Brevis and Darren Bravo all fell inside the first half of the innings which left the Patriots needing 12.5 runs per over.

That proved too steep a mountain to climb, and despite some pyrotechnics from Sherfane Rutherford, it was Nicholson Gordon who stole the show with the ball taking 3-24 to ensure a comfortable victory for the Tallawahs.

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    The two-time champions and joint hosts have won all three of their matches in Group C against Papua New Guinea, Uganda and New Zealand and have already secured a spot in the Super 8.

    A win over Afghanistan in their final Group Stage game at the Daren Sammy Cricket Stadium in St. Lucia on Monday will see them advance as winners of Group C.

    Their opponents also have three wins in as many games and are currently top of the group with a superior net run rate, 4.230 to 2.596.

    West Indies skipper Rovman Powell addressed the media on Sunday ahead of Monday’s encounter.

    “Obviously, it's a top of the table clash. Afghanistan have been playing good T20 cricket and consistent T20 cricket. They have a lot of match winners. So, it's something that we have to come with our best game. As I said before, they're playing good T20 cricket. So, it's an opportunity for us to play against another world class side. Very good practice going into the Super 8 games,” he said.

    The hosts have played their three games in Guyana and Trinidad & Tobago and are looking forward to playing at the Daren Sammy Stadium in St. Lucia, a pitch known as one of the better ones in the region for batting.

    “Yeah, definitely. When we look on the schedule, all the batters were excited to come to St. Lucia. Traditionally, St. Lucia have been a place where batters like to bat. It's also an opportunity for bowlers to bowl good spells here, especially the fast bowlers. We think that St. Lucia offer 60 - 40 in terms of, from a batting perspective, to bowl. And so, if you are a bowler, or if you are a batter, you definitely can get something out of the St. Lucia wicket,” Powell said.

    One major concern for the West Indies has been the form of opener Johnson Charles who has scored 44 runs in three games, so far, with all 44 of those runs coming against Uganda.

    Powell says he expects Charles to come good at some point and is encouraging him to continue to be aggressive at the top of the innings.

    “It's just a case of us telling him to be Johnson Charles, be his natural self. If he's an aggressive player, we expect him to play aggressive. But with that aggression, we know at some point he will fail and at some point, he will come good. So, it's for us now to support him, it's for us now to give him that additional backing that he needs and I think everyone is behind him to come good tomorrow or when he gets the opportunity in the future games,” he said.

    Since the tournament, the regional side have climbed up to number three in the ICC T20 International rankings.

    Naturally, a team playing a home World Cup will face pressure to perform well but this bump in ranking will only magnify that pressure.

    Powell says the team is aware and ready for the challenge ahead.

    “I think pressure is always there, especially when you're at home, especially when you're playing a World Cup at home. Pressure is always there, but it's for us as individuals to manage that pressure,” he said.

    “I think for me as captain, when I started this journey 12 or 14 months ago, when I took over as captain, we were at eight or nine in the ranking. To see us at number three now in the world is a pleasing feeling. And it shows that not just myself, but the players are coming together and we're doing something right. I've never played in a West Indies team that is ranked number three in the world. So that for me is something special and hopefully, just hopefully, we can continue to climb those rankings,” he added.

     

     

     

     

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    However, a blistering opening spell from Tanzim Hasan Sakib, who finished with career-best T20I figures of 4-7 – ensured that measly figure was enough. 

    Tanzim got the ball rolling by dismissing Kushal Bhurtel and Anil Sah within three third-over deliveries, then had Paudel and Sundeep Jora caught as Nepal fell to 26-5.

    Kushal Malla steadied the ship somewhat, but his match-high 27 runs came off 40 deliveries as Mustafizur Rahman (3-7) and Shakib (2-9) bowled efficiently, the former's ball accounting for his dismissal as he looped a shot to Najmul Hossain Shanto at mid off.

    Nepal went into the final over needing 22 to see a spirited performance rewarded with a victory, but their final two wickets fell from the first two balls as Bangladesh clinched second place in Group D, behind South Africa.

    That result ended the Netherlands' hopes of progression, and their tournament ended with a whimper as they suffered an 81-run defeat to Sri Lanka in Kingstown.

    Sri Lanka set a daunting target of 202 – the joint-highest of the tournament to date, alongside Australia versus England – with Kusal Mendis and Charith Asalanka making 46 runs apiece, the latter hitting five sixes off 21 balls.

    The demoralised Dutch fell well short in their chase and were all out for 118 with three overs remaining, Nuwan Thushara helping himself to a hat-trick for Sri Lanka.

    Data Debrief: Paltry total enough for Bangladesh

    Bangladesh supporters might have been twitchy when they limped to just 106 against a Nepal team who have threatened an upset repeatedly at this tournament, but some composed bowling ensured it was enough.

    Their tally of 106 runs was the lowest to ever be successfully defended at a T20 World Cup.

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    "Yes we finished well, we took early wickets with the ball," Azam said after the game. "With the bat we didn't finish well. Lost back to back wickets, got over the line in the end.

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    Pakistan's exit from the World Cup was the earliest they had been knocked out of the competition, having lost their opening two games to the USA and India. 

    Azam's future as the captain has been called into question, and could hand the armband over to Afridi, who was named as the new captain following Pakistan's league stage exit of the ODI World Cup in India last year.

    The 29-year-old explained that conversations will be had to discuss his future as Pakistan captain, but admitted the decision is down to the PCB. 

    "When I left captaincy (previously), I felt that I shouldn't be captain any more and announced it myself. When PCB gave it back, that was their decision," Azam said. 

    "Now we'll go back and have a discussion about what all has happened here. If I leave captaincy again then I will inform everyone.

    "For now, I haven't thought about it and the decision is up to PCB."