Morgan stars as St Catherine reach JAM20 semi-finals
Jermaine Lannaman, Gleaner Writer
All-rounder Wayne Morgan produced an outstanding display to help St Catherine CC record a 12-run win over Melbourne in their Jamaica Cricket Association JAMT20 quarter-final encounter at Kensington Park on Saturday.
Morgan, playing in his first game since returning from league cricket in England, made 50 in St Catherine's competitive score of 131 for nine off 20 overs.
The former national invitee then returned to claim three for 15 as Melbourne were restricted to 119 for nine in their allotted overs.
The result lifted St Catherine into the final four where they will play Jamaica Defence Force (JDF), who defeated first-timers University of the West Indies (UWI) by five wickets in the second game of a double header at the venue.
"After losing a few early wickets we did well to recover with Wayne Morgan and Pete Salmon," said St Catherine captain Danza Hyatt. "We then went out there and played pretty well, and we are now looking forward to the semi-finals."
Morgan's innings which included three sixes and three fours, rescued the Saints who had slipped to 16 for three early in their innings. Salmon, who hit 33 three sixes and two fours, helped to take the score from 67 for six towards the end. Hyatt and Tamar Lambert, St Catherine's most experienced players, made one and ten, respectively.
Off-spin of all-rounder Yannick Elliott, three for 35, emerged as Melbourne's best bowler.
Melbourne got off to a fairly decent start in their hunt for victory with openers Sadiki Bolt putting on 22 for the opening wicket. However, after both fell for 12 runs respectively, the men from Courtney Walsh Drive kept losing wickets regularly.
Elliott, 24, Tafari Williams 22, and Damion Jacobs 17 were the leading batsmen with the returning Carlton Baugh Jr contributing five.
St Catherine's Morgan was supported by Oraine Williams who took three for 20, and Dave Morgan, who finished with three for 18.
Melbourne's coach Robert Samuels said 130 was gettable, but his batsmen batted out of character.
"We have been batting well with regards to hitting boundaries and running between the wickets, however, today the batsmen seemed to want to hit boundaries only," he said. "But congratulations to St Catherine, they came here with a plan and executed accordingly."
Meanwhile, in the JDF versus UWI showdown, the latter made 129 for four with opener Desmond Jones getting 59 not out and Ravmon Powell 42 against off-spinner Akbar Moodie who took two for 16.
Rasheed Outar with 58 not out and veteran Bereston Reid, 36, led the reply for the JDF who achieved their target at 130 for five with a delivery to spare.