About the Match
Queen’s Park is all set to host the much awaited first semi-final of the CPL on August 22 between Guyana Amazon Warriors and Trinidad & Tobago Red Steel. Finishing off first with 10 points after a magnificent run in the group matches, Amazon Warriors looked pretty strong compared to Red Steel in the earlier stages of CPL but Red Steel bounced back in the later stages, and just managed to reserve their semi-final berth with 6 points. Having proved their superiority with the last three consecutive wins, Amazon will be a tough team to beat. At the same time, Red Steel who fought really hard to get here will not let this opportunity slip away so easily. It will be interesting to see which team makes it to the finals.
Guyana Amazon Warriors:
Amazon has excelled throughout the series, barring minor hiccups. In their latest victory over Hawksbills, the talented Santokie with a figure of 3-19, has emerged as a key player for the team. Mohammed Hafeez’s 50 off 23 balls at a pressure situation was a brilliant knock that removed Hawksbills from the race for the final four. Though Franklin started a strong chase, wickets started to fall quickly. Hafeez then kept his cool and smashed fours and sixes to reach the target. He saw to it that Santokie’s efforts didn’t go wasted and brought his team right to the top of the group. The openers need to build a strong foundation in the upcoming match and others will have to keep the momentum going when they face the tough bowling squad of Red Steel.
Trinidad & Tobago Red Steel:
Their win on Saturday over Zouks was enough to earn them a place in the semi-finals. However, Red Steel’s disappointing loss to Tallawahs on Sunday has exposed some of their weaknesses. Though the bowlers like Badree, Bravo and Cooper did exceptionally well in both the matches, it was the dismal performance of the batsmen that lost them the match. Unable to build partnerships and wickets falling like a pack of cards, Red Steel only posted 133 runs against the Tallawahs. In the previous match, it was Samuel Badree’s 2-18 that restricted the Zouks to a lowly 99 that the batsmen could easily achieve. O’Brien and Barath put up a strong foundation, which was later well supported by the Bravo brothers, to reach the easy target. However, they couldn’t repeat their performance on Sunday and suffered a humiliating defeat. A disciplined bowling unit holds a key to their chances of winning this game.
Being the under-dogs in this tournament, T&T Red Steel is thanking its lucky stars for making it to the semi-finals. However, will they perform and live up to the expectations of their fans and emerge victorious once again? Or will the Amazon Warriors continue their joyous ride and reach the finals? It all depends on who puts their best foot forward on Thursday and leaps into the finals. I feel that defeating Guyana Amazon Warriors will be a daunting task for Red Steel and Warriors will prevail over Trinidad & Tobago Red Steel in this important semifinal clash.
Guyana Amazon Warriors, 1.73 @ William Hill