First-person reports from the stands
Series/Tournaments: Caribbean Premier League
Teams: West Indies
Choice of game
I picked this game for a couple reasons: it was the first ever CPL final, and it was the only way I wanted to spend my 30th birthday. The Guyana Amazon Warriors were firm favorites thanks to their bowling line-up that included Lasith Malinga, Sunil Narine and Krishmar Santokie, but I was a Tallawah supporter on the day. Chris Gayle and Kumar Sangakkara on one side was irresistible.
Gayle played the most influential role in the game because of the different approach he brought to the crease. He played a captain's knock to take his side to victory.
One thing I'd have changed about the match
The game was being played at Port of Spain, Trinidad and I would have loved to see the Red Steel play at home in the final.
Face-off I relished
Narine vs Sangakkara to me was fascinating. Narine turned and beat Sanga time after time with his variety, and for a moment Sanga looked as if he were in the Caribbean Sea unsure of his next move.
The game was filled with wow moments. James Franklin's catch to get rid of Sanga, the Triniposse's entertainment, and the two straight drives that Andre Russell hammered of Malinga's final over stood out.
The stands were packed and the noise level was extremely high. The intensity of the game, the cheer-leading, and the Triniposse DJs were responsible for this. Danny Morrison had the crowd in stitches when he danced with the ladies in the Triniposse stand. The Trinidadian players on the Amazon Warriors side got the most cheer.
Fancy dress index
Fancy dressing was the order of the day. From Bouncer the mascot, to the Limacol man and carnival characters, this game featured a lot of fancy-dressing.
Entertainment Entertainment was plenty, or as my fellow Trinidadians would say: "Real fete boy". There was Soca music, Indian music and everything in between. There was mid-innings live entertainment as well as a free after-party on the grounds with entertainment from Trinidadian Soca artistes. The tournament closed with a spectacular fireworks display at the end.
ODI v Twenty20
That's a tough question since I am a cricket fanatic who would choose a gruelling Test any day. I like T20 mainly because it is the only format where you can see people from different cultures and backgrounds play under one banner.
I was extremely pleased with the quality and organization of the CPL and the final was played with an intensity that any neutral would have enjoyed. The fans in the Caribbean can hardly wait for CPL 2014 now. I think a major contributor to the success was the length of the tournament, where boredom did not set in at anytime.
Marks out of 10
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Barry Parasram is an ardent fan of West Indies cricket, who believes no batsman will ever match Brian Lara's greatness. He has a bachelors degree in Occupational Health , Safety and the Environment and is due to begin his Masters.
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