Russell shines as Tallawahs book spot in today's CPL final
BASSETERRE, St Kitts (CMC):
Andre Russell smashed his maiden Twenty20 hundred as Jamaica Tallawahs beat title-holders Trinbago Knight Riders (TKR) by 19 runs in a rain-hit affair at Warner Park here on Friday night, to book a spot in today's final against Guyana Amazon Warriors at 6 p.m. (Jamaica time).
The Jamaican struck exactly 100 off 44 deliveries as Tallawahs defied a lengthy rain break to post an imposing 195 for seven off their overs after they were sent in.
Set revised target of 130 off 12 overs, TKR closed on 110 for seven, with Bangladeshi left-arm spinner Shakib al Hasan doing the bulk of the damage with three for 23, and Russell picking up two for 27 to clinch the Man of the Match honours.
New Zealander Colin Munro top-scored with 38 and South African opener Hashim Amla got 37, but once they were separated, TKR lost wickets steadily as the innings went into decline.
CHASING SECOND TITLE
With the result, it means Tallawahs will chase their second CPL title after winning the inaugural tournament in 2013, while Amazon Warriors will be after their maiden one.
Tallawahs got a flying start from captain Chris Gayle and Chadwick Walton, who put on 38 off 23 deliveries for the first wicket.
The left-handed Gayle faced 26 balls and slammed two fours and three sixes.
Russell then played a blinder, belting three fours and 11 sixes as he dominated a 101-run, fifth-wicket stand with Shakib Al Hasan, who made 19 from 23 balls in a supporting role.
Russell was simply brilliant. He gathered one run from his first four deliveries before exploding in the 11th over with a pair of sixes on either side of the wicket off debutant fast bowler Anderson Phillips.
The right-hander followed up by smashing pacer Ronsford Beaton for 19 runs in the 13th over and another pair of sixes off seamer Kevon Cooper in the next over followed by a single off the first ball of the 15th from medium pacer Dwayne Bravo, saw the batsman to his half-century off 23 balls.