Image courtesy of: Guyana Times
Russell’s quickfire 42 helped Jamaica get across the finish line with little trouble
South Africa pace bowler Vernon Philander took three wickets and West Indies all-rounder Andre Russell smashed an unbeaten 42 to lead the Jamaica Tallawahs to a seven-wicket win over the Antigua Hawksbills.
Antigua skipper Marlon Samuels won the toss and elected to bat first.
However, Samuels may have been pondering over whether he made the right decision after opening batsman Johnson Charles was dismissed for just seven runs.
Kieran Powell and former Australia captain Ricky Ponting stabilised Antigua’s innings with a 42-run partnership before Ponting was caught out off the bowling of Chris Gayle.
After Ponting’s dismissal, Philander and Sri Lanka spinner Muttiah Muralitharan ripped right through the middle and lower order batsmen as Antigua ended up scoring 117 off their 20 overs.
Powell was eventually dismissed for a brilliant 38 off 35 balls, which included one boundary and two sixes.
Philander was the pick of Jamaica’s bowlers with three wickets, while Gayle and Muralitharan both picked up two wickets apiece.
Chasing a relatively simple target of 118 to win, Jamaica were put on the back foot early into their innings as they lost three of their top batsmen for just 51 runs.
However, from then on it was all Antigua as Russell and Danza Hyatt put together a 69-run partnership at a run rate of 10.61 to secure the victory for the Tallawahs.
Russell finished undefeated on 42 off 23 balls, which included four boundaries and three maximums, while Hyatt remained unbeaten on 25 off 29 deliveries, which included two boundaries and a six.
Samuels, Kemar Roach and Rahkeem Cornwall all took one wicket apiece for the Hawksbills.