Russell ton takes Tallawahs surging into CPL final
Andre Russell struck a 42-ball century, his first in T20 cricket, to lift Jamaica Tallawahs to 195 and set up a convincing win over Trinbago Knight Riders, sealing their place in the CPL 2016 final. After a lengthy rain interruption during the run chase, Knight Riders’ adjusted target of 130 in 12 overs always looked out of their reach, and they fell 19 runs short in the second Qualifier.
After being asked to bat first, Tallawahs made halting progress in their first 10 overs. Openers Chadwick Walton and Chris Gayle got off to reasonably brisk starts, with Gayle hitting two fours and three sixes in his 26-ball 35. But both fell to Kevon Cooper before they could convert their starts into more substantial knocks. Kumar Sangakkara and Rovman Powell were dismissed in single figures to leave Tallawahs at 67 for 4 in the tenth over.
That brought Russell to the crease. It did not take long for the fireworks to begin. Russell launched Anderson Phillip for two mighty sixes down the ground in the 11th over and he was away. Phillip, Cooper and Ronsford Beaton all came in for heavy punishment in the ensuing overs as Russell pummelled three fours and 11 sixes to blaze his way to 100 off 44.
His 101-run fifth-wicket partnership with Shakib Al Hasan came off just 53 balls; Shakib contributed 19 off 23. In the midst of the carnage, Sunil Narine and Dwayne Bravo managed to keep things relatively tight, but that could not prevent a Russell-powered Tallawahs side from racing to 195 in their 20 overs.
In reply, Knight Riders lost Umar Akmal early, to a run-out, and pottered to 18 for 1 in three overs before a lengthy rain delay led to a D/L-adjusted target of 130 in 12 overs. With his team in need of quick runs after the resumption, Colin Munro wasted no time in providing some impetus, hitting three fours off Kesrick Williams in the fourth over.
More boundaries flowed from Munro’s bat, before he miscued a flighted ball from Imad Wasim to depart for 38 off 26, with Knight Riders still requiring 63 from the last four overs.
Hashim Amla took over briefly, hitting a couple of fours and one six. But, in the end, the magnitude of the task proved to be too great and Knight Riders lost five wickets in the last two overs as they stumbled to a 19-run defeat. (ESPNCricinfo)