Jermaine Lannaman, Sunday Gleaner Writer
Last year's beaten finalists, St Catherine CC, and first-time entrants University of Technology (UTech) will contest today's final of the Jamaica Cricket Association JAMT20 at Kensington Park.
St Catherine, captained by Danza Hyatt, advanced after their game with Jamaica Defence Force (JDF) ended in a no-result due to late afternoon rain at Kensington Park yesterday.
UTech who are competing in their first national competition, progressed after netting a 22-run win over Westmoreland.
In what was the feature game, rain brought an abandonment to the St Catherine versus JDF encounter with the soldiers on seven for one off 1.2 overs. This was in chase of St Catherine's massive total of 255 for three off their 20 overs.
St Catherine progressed to the final by virtue of having a better net run rate heading into the semi-finals.
"It's a pity the game did not end outright today, but I thought we batted really well," said Hyatt. "It was also a good confidence booster, especially for the batsmen heading into the final, which should be a competitive one against UTech."
St Catherine's imposing total was set up by Tamar Lambert, who retired hurt on 119.
He hit nine sixes and eight fours, and shared in a 159-run third wicket stand with Wayne Morgan, who finished unbeaten on 71. Danza Hyatt, 28, and young opener Oraine Williams, 22, also got among the runs.
For the soldiers, off-spinner Joseph Palmer took one for 32.
In the opening match, UTech were led to victory by Delbert Gayle and Bernard Jr. who both got half-centuries.
Gayle made 77, inclusive of three sixes and six fours, while David Bernard Jr slammed six sixes and three fours to end on 57 not out in UTech's 175 for five.
Pacer Jason Dawes took two for 29.
Westmoreland, in their reply, were undermined by fast bowler Andrew Richardson, who claimed three for 35, and in the end fell short at 163 off 18.4 overs.
There were also supporting roles for left-arm spinner Ransford Merchant and Damian Williams, who closed with two wickets.
"It was a good batting wicket, and after thinking that 140 would have been enough, we did better by getting over 160," said UTech captain Jon-Ross Campbell.
"We now look forward to the final where we expect a tough challenge, but are confident in ourselves of having what it takes to come out on top.
The final is scheduled to bowl off at 2 p.m.