Jamaica ease to CPL title
Jamaica Tallawahs 129 for 3 (Gayle 47*, Russell 33*) beat Guyana Amazon Warriors 128 for 5 (Simmons 40, Bernard 2-18) by seven wickets
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details
In the lead-up to the final against Jamaica Tallawahs, Curtly Ambrose, assistant coach of the Guyana Amazon Warriors, spoke about the importance of bowlers, specially Krishmar Santokie, Lasith Malinga and Sunil Narine. Santokie had had an impressive tournament, emerging as the leading wicket-taker with 16 at an average of 13.68.
The ending to his good run, however, went a little awry. Against Jamaica, in the final, the seamer was called on to bowl the 17th over, his last of the match. His last three overs had yielded an economical 11 runs. Jamaica needed 26 off 24 with seven wickets in hand and Guyana had a sliver of a chance at victory, after their batsmen had managed 128 for 5.
Guyana's defence of a middling total fell apart in that over. Santokie started with two wides down the leg side, one of which raced past the wicketkeeper Denesh Ramdin to the boundary. Two balls later, he bowled another wide outside off stump, and followed that up with three more down the legside. By the time he was done with the 11-ball over, Santokie had conceded 20 runs, 11 of those in wides. It took Chris Gayle and Andre Russell a mere three more balls to knock off the remaining six runs and help Jamaica claim the title.
Santokie's nightmarish over aside, Guyana had managed to stay in the chase for most of the innings. At the end of the 13th over, Jamaica were 58 runs adrift before Chris Gayle and Andre Russell took 20 runs of a Christopher Barnwell over to bring a seemingly ungainly chase under control.
Gayle played a steady innings, eschewing risks but hitting the occasional boundary to keep the asking rate in check. He watched from the other end as Chadwick Walton lost his wicket after some expansive shots in the third over and Kumar Sangakkara brought an end to his stint at the crease with a slog off Barnwell. Gayle finished with a well-paced 47 off 48 balls, with his 62-run fourth-wicket stand with Russell at the end taking his side to victory.
Earlier, Jamaica's bowlers did a good job of restricting the Guyana batsmen before James Franklin played an aggressive knock of 17 off 9 to take Guyana from 108 for 5 in the 19th over to 128 for 5. Pacer David Bernard struck in successive overs to dismiss opener William Perkins and Tillakaratne Dilshan, before Lendl Simmons and Ramdin steadied the innings with a third-wicket stand of 52. The pair scored the runs in good time, playing Muttiah Muralitharan with caution but going after Nikita Miller and Chris Gayle.
Ramdin smacked a six and a four off Russell in the 14th but just when their innings seemed to be gathering some momentum, Miller had Simmons caught in the deep by Sangakkara for 40. A couple of overs later, Sunil Narine, promoted ahead of Sarwan and James Franklin, fell for 9. Two deliveries later, Ramdin was dismissed by Gayle for 29. Franklin's last-over hits to the boundary ensured that Guyana had a respectable total to defend.
Gayle was awarded the Man-of-the-Match award for his innings, while Santokie was named Man of the Series.
The CPL result, however, will have no bearing on West Indies' representation in the 2013 Champions League T20, as Trinidad & Tobago have already qualified for the tournament by winning the country's domestic T20 competition earlier this year.