Saturday, March 2, 2024

No end to the Smith show


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Nicknamed “The Agent”, Dwayne Smith has made it no secret that he is in ripping form and opposing bowlers had better look out. The hapless C.O. Williams All Stars found this out Thursday night as he piloted Barbados to an easy six-wickets win in the UWI CO Williams Twenty20 Cricket Festival at 3Ws Oval.
Smith’s explosive unbeaten 64 was his third half-century in as many matches in the tournament as the Bajans qualified for last night’s final against arch-rivals Trinidad and Tobago in successfully chasing down the All Stars inadequate 119 for 4 with two overs to spare.
In Barbados’ first game versus Combined Campuses and Colleges (CCC) on the first night, Smith scored 53 from 30 balls with four sixes and three fours as the home team won with 15 balls to spare overhauling 119.
On the second Trinidad and Tobago felt the might of his blade as Smith struck three sixes and four fours in a 54-ball 68 as the visitors lost by four wickets. Thursday night against the All Stars was no different as he belted four fours and two sixes in his match-winning unbeaten 64.
Smith lost opening partner Dale Richards (2), captain Kirk Edwards (18) and Jonathan Carter for a first-ball duck by the time the score reached 36 in the eighth over. Left-armer Dane Currency caused a stir in the Barbados camp by bowling right-handed Edwards and left-handed Carter with consecutive arm balls.       
It took a 69-run stand in nine overs for the fourth wicket between Smith and diminutive wicket-keeper Shane Dowrich to put Barbados in sight of a third victory.
Dowrich, who was dismissed with 15 runs needed, is small in stature but not in power. His 25 came from 24 balls with two fours and a six as he played a supporting role to Smith. He played the shot of the night when he lifted the uncomplicated medium pace of Jed Yearwood over square cover for six to one of the longest boundaries on the ground.    
Currency snared three for 16 from his four overs to be the best bowler for the All Stars.
Earlier, the All Stars batted on winning the toss and knocked up a slow 113 for six from their 20 overs. This slow approach was typified by captain Shamarh Brooks who topscored with 34 from 37 deliveries with only one boundary.
Left-hander Omar Phillips at the top of the innings contributed a relatively quick 24 from 26 ball before he became the first of Sulieman Benn’s two wickets. Sunil Ambris, brother of CCC’s captain Romel Currency, chipped in with 22, hitting a four and a six.
It was the night of the left-arm spinners. After Currency’s three wickets in the Barbados innings, Ryan Hinds, who bowled the new ball for the Bajans, also took three for 17 while Benn took two for 19.    
Yannick Ottley’s second five-wicket haul in consecutive nights was not enough for CCC to avoid a third straight defeat, as Trinidad and Tobago won a nail-biting game by two wickets in the early game.
In spite of Ottley’s five for 11, the boys from the Land of the Hummingbird compiled 142 for nine in their 20 overs after winning the toss, then restricted the students to 140 for five.
The match was decided in the final with CCC requiring eight runs with six wickets in hand.
But Kyle Mayers (43) and Floyd Reifer (20 not out) could only scrape five runs as seamer Kevon Cooper kept a tight rein.
At the top of the innings openers Chadwick Walton (28) and Romel Currency (37) had posted 67 by the tenth over.
In Trinidad’s innings Lendl Simmons topscored by smashing 44 from 37 balls with four fours and three sixes. Darren Bravo and Kevon Cooper chipped in with 28 and 21, respectively.


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