T&T’s victory against Bangladesh in the Asia versus the Caribbean T20 cricket clash has been hailed as fantastic by manager of the team Omar Khan. The “Red Force” defeated Bangladesh by four wickets in the final match of the series at the Queen’s Park Oval in St Clair on Saturday night. Although they finished with four points, the same as Bangladesh and Afghanistan, they ended up third in the standings as the Asian teams had a better net run rate. If T&T was to lift the title, they would have had to secure their winning target of 125 from 9.5 overs. However, they slipped to 12 for five wickets and abandoned that lofty ambition. The frontline batsmen were all preoccupied with the 9.5-over target and lost their wickets through injudicious strokes.
The good crowd on hand was silenced and it took a great batting performance from allrounders Yannick Ottley and Sherwin Ganga, to pull T&T out of the hole and eventually on to victory. Ottley who finished the match with a six over long on was named man of the match, as he had earlier captured two for 17 off his four overs. His innings spanned 27 balls in which time he struck one four and four sixes. Ganga was also very good and showed his class with an unbeaten 40 off 40 balls with three. Earlier, the T&T spinners dominated the Bangladesh batsmen and was able to restrict them to 124 for nine off their 20 overs. Mohammed Ashraful was quick out the blocks in racing to 29, as he punished the fit again Shannon Gabriel. However, skipper Rayad Emrit brought on the spinners and they admirably pulled back the game. In addition to Ottley, Dave Mohammed grabbed three for 17, and Sherwin Ganga three for 19.
Manager Khan said, “When you look at it, that win was really fantastic. We are missing eight of our regular players and this was an under-strength team. Yet we are able to defeat a team ranked fourth on the International Cricket Council (ICC) T20 rankings.
“Initially we were going for the victory in ten overs to lift the overall title but when we lost our big hitters in William Perkins, Adrian Barath and Justin Guillen, we reverted to chasing the title in the 20 overs, which we got. “This team has shown a lot of maturity, character and self belief and to defeat Bangladesh will give them a tremendous confidence boost.” Meanwhile, chairman of the national selection panel Dudnath Ramkessoon shared that the selectors have already chosen the team for the upcoming Champions League in South Africa and it has been sent to the Champions League committee and will be released later this week. The players will continue their training today at the National Cricket Centre (NCC) under the watchful eyes of national coach David Williams. The T&T Cricket Board (TTCB) is currently in discussion with the Barbados Cricket Association (BCA) and they are trying to orgnanise some matches in Barbados next week, before the team flies off to South Africa.