Jamaica fight for first win
PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad, CMC – Jamaica rescued their Caribbean T20 campaign when they pulled off a much-needed win over Windward Islands at Queen’s Park Oval on Wednesday night.
Without a win in two matches and desperately in need of points, Jamaica pulled themselves together in time, successfully defending 116 for six to come away with a 12-run victory in a rain-affected affair.
Danza Hyatt top scored with 44 from 33 balls, an innings that pulled Jamaica out of a hole after they were drifting at 51 for three in the tenth over.
The Windwards then looked to be favourites when they got to 65 for two in the 11thover of their run chase but captain Tamar Lambert, trundling his uncomplicated off-spin, snatched three wickets in one over as seven wickets fell for 35 runs.
Opener Andre Fletcher hit a top score of 26 and wicketkeeper Lyndon James chipped in with 24.
The result pushed Jamaica into third spot on five points, alongside the second placed Trinidad and Tobago on the same number of points.
In a match reduced to 17 overs per side after rain delayed the start by 80 minutes, Jamaica lost both openers cheaply after they were sent in, to be 34 for two in the seventh over.
Left-hander John Campbell (9) found third man’s grasp with his attempted reverse sweep off off-spinner Shane Shillingford at 19 for one before Nkruman Bonner (9) holed out in the deep off left-arm spinner Garey Mathurin.
When Lambert patted a return catch back to off-spinner Liam Sebastien, Jamaica were in need of a saviour and got it in the form of Hyatt.
The right-hander blasted four sixes and dominated a 51-run stand off 40 balls for the fourth wicket with Andre McCarthy who got 19.
Hyatt perished in the penultimate over to give Mathurin (2-18) his second wicket but by then had helped push Jamaica beyond the 100-run mark and to a total at which they could bowl.
Shotgun opener Johnson Charles looked in good touch, cracking three fours in getting 14 off just ten balls. He had taken two fours off left-arm seamer Krishmar Santokie when he missed the next delivery and was bowled, in the third over at 18 for one.
With seven runs added, veteran opener Devon Smith followed for six off medium pacer David Bernard, as the Windwards slumped.
Fletcher then combined with Keddy Lesporis (19) to put on 40 off 38 balls and rebuild the Windwards innings. While Fletcher faced 34 balls and slammed one six, Lesporis counted two fours off 20 deliveries.
Lambert’s introduction, however, turned the game on its head. He had Lesporis taken at point off his second delivery, bowled captain Darren Sammy for a first ball “duck” and then capped a remarkable over by trapping Miles Bascomble lbw, also without scoring.
Tottering at 66 for five, the Windwards needed a big effort from the experienced Fletcher but his tenure at the crease ended soon afterward when he was bowled by Bernard (2-25) in the 14th over.
Santokie, who finished with three for 24, took two of the last four wickets to fall to perform the final rites.