Hafeez knocks Antigua Hawksbills out
Guyana Amazon Warriors 170 for 5 (Hafeez 50*, Tonge 3-24) beat Antigua Hawksbills 166 for 6 (Powell 47, Samuels 43, Santokie 3-19) by 5 wickets
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details
The Antigua Hawksbills were fighting to keep themselves alive in the Caribbean Premier League 2013. The Guyana Amazon Warriors needed 16 off the final over, in a chase of 167. On came Devon Thomas, who had never bowled in Twenty20 cricket prior to this tournament and was yet to bowl in the match. He was duly taken for 19, Mohammad Hafeez playing the hero for Guyana with a little help from Sunil Narine.
Marlon Samuels turned to the medium pace of Thomas because he had few other options. His strike bowlers, Kemar Roach, Gavin Tonge and Sheldon Cotterrell - as well as Samuels himself - had bowled out. Seamer Orlando Peters and offspinner Rahkeem Cornwall had gone for 46 runs between them in three overs. And so it was Thomas. The first two balls were on shorter lengths to Hafeez, who was smacking his way to a half-century. Both were pulled for singles - one accounted for Guyana captain Ramnaresh Sarwan, who was attempting to scamper a second to keep Hafeez on strike.
The third ball, the first one Narine faced, another short delivery, was deposited in the stands at midwicket. It had Antigua coach Viv Richards shaking his head - the field, with the straight fielders up and the ones square of the wicket deep suggested another short one was on its way, and Narine was ready and executed perfectly. After an on-field conference, Antigua reversed the field, and Thomas got one in the blockhole. Narine managed to turn the strike over. Next up, Thomas got the full delivery wrong, full toss on the pads, flicked away for six by Hafeez. Game over. Antigua tried to force the first Super Over of the tournament with all the fielders up in the circle for the final delivery, but Hafeez coolly deposited it over mid-on.
Hafeez, who was handed the new ball when Antigua chose to bat, conceded just 26 runs in his four overs in what was his final game at CPL 2013 before he departs for national duty.
Left-arm pacer Krishmar Santokie and Narine were also very effective, but four of Antigua's top five managed rapid cameos. A lot of the damage was done in the penultimate over of their innings, in which Ben Rohrer and Thomas took 24 runs - including three sixes - off allrounder Christopher Barnwell. Thomas was out in the final over, ruled obstructing the field after he had changed directions while running, as Antigua finished on 166 for 6, a total that stretched Guyana but proved to be just short of enough.
The result meant CPL 2013's four semi-finalists were confirmed, with Guyana, Barbados, Jamaica and Trinidad & Tobago going through. The final league game, on Sunday, will decide who plays whom in the semis.