Trinidad and Tobago made light work of the Combined Campuses and Colleges (CCC) team yesterday with a seven-wicket victory in Zone B to book their passage to the semi-final of the Nagico Super50 tournament last evening at Queen’s Park Oval.
In fact, T&T’s batsmen chased the requisite 99 runs so quickly either side of the “lunch” break, the players had at least a couple of hours to relax as they prepare for their next assignment, likely against Group A winners Jamaica, and that will be confirmed when Group B ends today with Barbados facing the lowly, winless Leeward Islands.
Before the break T&T faced four overs, having bowled CCC out in 44.2 overs, in two hours and 42 minutes. They had rattled off 34 runs without losing a wicket by then, with Kyle Mayers and CCC skipper Steven Jacobs taking the early punishment from Evin Lewis’ bat, as the leftie rattled off three fours and a six.
The batsman added four more fours and a big six off Raymond Reifer that hit the roof of the Learie Constantine stand, but gave his wicket away by cutting a straight ball to backward point.
Simmons took over with five fours and a big six off Kavem Hodge over midwicket to draw T&T within five of their target, but played on to be dismissed for 38. Adrian Barath (one) joined Darren Bravo (five not out), but continued his dismal form when he offered a catch back to bowler Jacobs, before Jason Mohammed (five not out) came in to see off CCC with a four through cover.
CCC asked T&T to field, but Ravi Rampaul started the rout, pinning Chadwick Walton in front, lbw for two. Anthony Alleyne and Kyle Corbin briefly flirted with a recovery, but T&T skipper Dwayne Bravo was having none of it, and sent Corbin packing by scattering the stumps with exaggerated inward movement.
He then introduced Sunil Narine and Man-of-Match Jason Mohammed after ten overs, and the match was firmly T&T’s after slow bowler Mohammed removed Alleyne, caught behind by Denesh Ramdin for 19 and captain Jacobs, bowled for three.
Narine kept the batsmen paralysed with his mystery spin. T&T’s first four bowlers were so miserly that CCC stuttered to 78 after 37 overs.
Only Reifer (R) got past 20, but his 27 (two fours) cost him 70 balls. He watched cousin Floyd Reifer struggle for seven off 39 balls before pulling back to the bowler to give Mohammed his third wicket, and Hodge (two) was sent back by Bravo cheaply.
Narine, Rayad Emrit and Rampaul each got a wicket to close out the innings early, leaving Simmons and Lewis to blast T&T towards victory, before Darren Bravo and Mohammed formalised the result.