UNBEATEN 53: Evin Lewis —Photo: JERMAINE CRUICKSHANK

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T&T cruise past Canada in T20

By Kern De Freitas kern.defreitas@trinidadexpress.com

Trinidad and Tobago followed up Tuesday's big three-day match win over Canada with a nine-wicket whipping in the T20 version of the game at Guaracara Park in Pointe-a-Pierre on Wednesday night.

After limiting the visitors to 142 for four on a decent batting strip despite a pair of rain breaks, T&T cantered home to 143 for one in 16.1 overs under the cool, calm and collected batting of two 21-year-olds, number three batsman Kjorn Ottley and opener Evin Lewis.

They both registered half centuries in an unbroken second-wicket stand of 105, Ottley stroking 61 off just 35 balls in 49 minutes, including seven fours and two sixes, while Lewis pummelled five fours and two sixes in 42 balls for 53 in 77 minutes.

The other opener, Justin Guillen helped T&T get off to a fair start before he pulled the first ball of the second over by Junaid Siddiqui to Usman Limbada at midwicket with the score on 38. Guillen's innings of 17 off 20 balls was laced with three fours.

Lewis and Ottley were not pressured, and counter–attacked the Canadian bowlers. Only Siddiqui escaped big punishment.

Rizwan Cheema's right arm medium pace was dispatched for two sixes, and 18-year-old off-spinner Nikhil Dutta was punished too, his two overs going for 28 as Lewis and Ottley needed just ten overs to finish off the Canadians, once Guillen had departed.

Canada elected to bat first, and after a rain delay lost Hiral Patel for three, stumped by some smart work by wicketkeeper Nicholas Pooran, after he was deceived in flight by Yannick Ottley.

But Ruvindu Gunasekera joined Cheema, and the pair put on 68 for the second wicket. It was more of a repair job, as the pair never threatened the T&T bowling attack, except for Cheema's audacious hit for six off express pacer Shannon Gabriel.

Gabriel, Rayad Emrit and Imran Khan were the most expensive T&T bowlers, Khan and Gabriel going for 31 runs each, and Emrit, 37. But Khan did have the big breakthrough, trapping Cheema in front in the tenth over with the score on 75, while Ansil Bhagan accounted for Gunasekera, caught by Kjorn Ottley at mid-wicket, in the very next over without a run added.

To their credit, Canada did not collapse. Amarbir Hansra stayed to the end, slamming two fours and two sixes for his 40 off 45 balls, with former Guyana batsman Damodar Daesrath lending support (23 off 27 balls, three fours), before the latter holed out to substitute Yannic Cariah at long on.

Canada finished their 20 overs at a competitive 142 for four, but the T&T batsmen made light work of the chase.

The teams were scheduled to meet in the second and final T20 last night at Guaracara Park. They will end the tour with a 50-over encounter at the National Cricket Centre tomorrow from 10 a.m.

T20 SCOREBOARD T&T vs Canada Canada Innings H Patel st N Pooran b Y Ottley 3 R Cheema lbw I Khan 44 R Gunasekera c K Ottley b A Bhagan 20 A Hansra not out 40 D Daesrath c sub Y Cariah b I Khan 23 U Limbada not out 3 Extras (3lb, 6w) 9 TOTAL: (4 wkts, 20 overs) 142 Did not bat: Tariq Hamza, Junaid Siddiqui, Nikhil Dutta, Henry Osinde, Jeremy Gordon Fall of wickets: 7, 75, 75, 114 Bowling: Gabriel 4-0-31-0 (1w); Y Ottley 4-0-19-1 (3w); Bhagan 4-1-21-1 (2w); Emrit 4-0-37-0; Khan 4-0-31-2 T&T Innings J Guillen c U Limbada b J Siddiqui 17 E Lewis not out 53 K Ottley not out 61 Extras (4b, 1lb, 6w, 1nb) 12 TOTAL (1 wkt, 16.1 overs) 143 Did not bat: Jason Mohammed, Denesh Ramdin, Nicholas Pooran, Imran Khan, Yannick Ottley, Rayad Emrit, Ansil Bhagan, Shannon Gabriel Fall of wicket: 38 Bowling: Hansra 4-0-28-0 (1w); Osinde 3-0-28-0 (4w); Siddique 3.1-0-15-1 (1nb); Cheema 3-0-33-0; Dutta 2-0-28-0; Gordon 1-0-6-0

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