Gayle wants new focus for semis
Jermaine Lannaman, Gleaner Writer
Despite losing their last two matches, Jamaica Tallawahs captain, Chris Gayle, is optimistic about his team's chances ahead of their Limacol Caribbean Premier League semi-final play-off encounter against the Trinidad and Tobago Red Steel.
The contest, which is scheduled to take place tomorrow, will be played at Warner Park in St Kitts, and will see the winner progressing to a second semi-final play-off on Thursday, at the same venue.
The second semi-final play-off will feature the Guyana Amazon Warriors, who finished second in the preliminary round to the Barbados Tridents.
The latter, in winning the round automatically, progressed to the final, which will be played on Saturday also at the same venue.
"We are very disappointed to have lost back-to-back matches and finishing fourth in the standings. But that is now behind us and we will have to now focus on the play-offs," said Gayle.
"We have the Red Steel, who along with ourselves led the tournament for the most part and with it still have a chance of defending our title. We just have to make full use of it," he declared.
The Tallawahs, after enjoying a six-win, one-loss record and leadership of the points table heading into last weekend's final set of preliminary round matches, first lost to the eliminated St Lucia Zouks by seven wickets on Saturday.
They were bowled out for 143 inside 19.1 overs before witnessing the Zouks post 144 for three in 17.3 overs.
They followed it up with a huge 88 runs defeat to the Tridents a day later, their worst ever result in the two-year-old tournament.
The Tridents first scored a challenging 175 for eight off their maximum 20 overs, before returning to bowl the Tallawahs out for 87 inside 15.3 overs.
The influential Gayle, who went via the leg before wicket route for three and one, respectively, in the games, is also of the view that if the team should beat the Red Steel it could provide an ideal lift.
"With the final still a possibility, should we defeat the Red Steel, it would be good for us as it would break the defeats and put us back on the right track," he said.