Guyana Amazon Warriors 153 for 4 (Mohammed 38, Singh 35*) beat St Lucia Stars 152 for 8 (Charles 53, Emrit 4-35, Rashid 2-9) by six wickets.
In a battle of the winless, Guyana Amazon Warriors got off the mark in tense fashion, securing a six-wicket win with a ball to spare courtesy a rounded batting effort chasing a target of 153. They rode their luck, behind thirties from Chadwick Walton, Jason Mohammed and Gajanand Singh. The victory for the 2016 finalists gives them a boost leading into their home-leg beginning Thursday in Providence while Stars remain without a win at the half-way point of their season.
Charles in charge
The Stars had been missing a major top-order contribution through the first nine days of the tournament but Johnson Charles produced a half-century to steer the first-half of the innings after Darren Sammy elected to bat. Despite a pair of hiccups in the Powerplay that saw Andre Fletcher and Marlon Samuels fall cheaply, Charles battered his way to 53 off 32 balls with three fours and four sixes, showcasing some of the ferocity that made him such a valuable asset in the team’s maiden play-off appearance in their final year as the Zouks.
Rashid Khan’s intervention
The Afghanistan legspinner had gone wicketless in his first three games for Amazon Warriors but on his return to the venue that saw him claim 7 for 18 against West Indies in June, Rashid Khan reprised a slice of that magic with a sterling 2 for 9, the most economical four-over spell of CPL 2017. Charles fell skying a slog to long-on two balls after the drinks break but his next over was a sight to behold.
Rashid preyed on Kamran Akmal, whose awful tournament plummetted new depths when he flailed aimlessly after charging down the wicket to be stumped for 2. Standing toe-to-toe with Darren Sammy, Rashid ripped three balls past the outside edge and would have had a wicket maiden were it not for a googly that pitched outside off before spinning viciously down the leg side for a wide. Sammy gave Rashid a high five at the end of the over as a mark of respect for the testing spell.
Emrit takes four
But Emrit bounced back strongly, conceding just three runs off the last four balls while taking two wickets. Sammy misfired a drive to long-on before Rahkeem Cornwall’s attempt to pull Emrit against the wind found Rashid at deep-midwicket. The Stars’ power failure across those final four balls proved vital. Emrit ended with 4 for 35.
More to follow…