CPL 2023: Tallawahs eliminate Kings to keep title retention hopes alive
Jamaica Tallawahs 126/5 (King 30, Reifer 30*; Forde 4/23, Pierre 1/26) beat Saint Lucia Kings 125/9 (Chase 40, Raza 19; Allen 4/25, Green 2/19) by five wickets
Jamaica Tallawahs will head to Qualifier 2 of the Republic Bank Caribbean Premier League (CPL) following a comprehensive five-wicket defeat of the Saint Lucia Kings.
The Tallawahs won the toss and opted to field first and that proved to be an inspired decision as they ripped through the Kings’ batting to restrict them to 125/9.
The Kings never adapted to the slow track, and this was made harder when they ran into a Fabian Allen Playoff masterclass as the all-rounder led the way for the Tallawahs taking 4/25.
The Kings were always up against it from that moment, and the Tallawahs duly wrapped up victory inside 18 overs, having been given a great foundation by Brandon King and Alex Hales.
The Kings had their moments with the ball while trying to defend a modest 12-run target, Matthew Forde took a career-best 4/19, but that was as good as it got for the Kings.
Earlier, the Tallawahs had suffered an initial setback when they lost Mohammed Amir to injury three balls into the match but the remaining Tallawahs bowling attack made light of the absence of their talisman.
Colin Munro and Johnson Charles fell inside the PowerPlay as the Kings innings struggled to get going, with wickets falling outside the PowerPlay.
Green picked up his second wicket to remove Bhanuka Rajapasa before Nicholson Gordon got in on the act.
The fast bowler removed Shadrack Descarte for four to leave the Kings in trouble at 59/4 at the halfway stage of the innings.
Wickets continued to fall at regular intervals, and when Fabian Allen removed Sikander Raza and Roston Chase in the 16th over, the Kings were all at sea. Allen added two more wickets in the 18th over to end a brilliant spell with 4/25.
Just when it appeared the Kings were on the brink of being bowled out Khary Pierre and Peter Hatzoglou got them up to 125 to give them something to bowl at.
In reply, the Tallawahs confirmed victory when King and Hales raced to 43 in the first four overs. King eventually fell for 30 and Hales for 24 but the damage was done.
The honour of seeing the Tallawahs home fell to Raymon Reifer who took the drama out of the chase with a sensibly constructed 30 not out.
The Tallawahs victory now means that they head to Qualifier 2 on Friday night. (CPL T20)