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T&T Red Steel, Tallawahs in crucial semis
After lead the six-team table for almost two weeks in their quest to book an automatic spot in the finals, T&T Red Steel will now have to face Jamaica Tallawahs in the first of two semifinals on Wednesday at Warner Park, St Kitts after finishing their preliminary round in third place.
Scores: TRIDENTS 175 for eight off 20 overs (Kieron Pollard 63, William Perkins 36, Dwayne Smith 32; Rusty Theron 4-35, Daniel Vettori 2-22) TALLAWAHS 87 all out off 15.3 overs (Nkrumah Bonner 47; Jeevan Mendis 2-15, Ashley Nurse 2-16, Rayad Emrit 2-29)
It was also a disappointment for the Tallawahs which was comprehensively beaten by the Barbadian Tridents in the final round-robin match last night in St Kitts. The winners of the first semifianls will then challenge the Guayana Amazons in Thursday’s second semis at the same venue and the winner will play the championships on Saturday.
Meanwhile, Customs officials in New York drilled into the bat of Guyana Amazon Warriors player Jimmy Neesham, looking for drugs, well T&T Red Steel management will be looking at the bats of their players, looking for runs, that have dried up all of a sudden. The Red Steel got off the plane in St Kitts last week as leaders of the Limacol Premier League T20 tournament and today they have to fight through the qualifiers to make it to the finals. Two losses at the hands of the Barbados Tridents and Antigua Hawksbills saw Dwayne Bravo’s men finish preliminary play with six wins and three losses.
Yesterday, the players had a long team meeting and the senior players all spoke about the sudden rundrought on a pitch that is full of runs and on a small ground. The general consensus coming from the players was that they just did not access the conditions here well and got excited about the facility and did not plan their innings, as they had done in previous matches.
Bravo is not a happy man “I just cannot understand what is going on with the batsmen. We have all been among the runs in this tournament so far and we need to take responsibility for what has happened in the last two games. Players need to step up now or it is over and then all know that. I think that we have not structured our innings and well and have not batted well in the power-play.
We are losing wickets too early and hence cannot maximise the powerplay and this has us behind the game all the time, “We need to get a good start in the play-off and everyone who is coming in to bat has to have sense of where the team is and what they need to do. We have playing poor shots and a lot of this has been due to the early pressure that we have been under.
Red Steel is expected to make changes to their team and their is a possibility that middle order batsman Jason Mohammed may get a look in, at the expense of the man who replaced him Javon Searles. Mohammed would add that spinvariety to the bowling attack and with the pitch here assisting the slow bowlers at times, it gives Bravo that added option.