Chadwick Walton scored 80 not out as Trinbago Knight Riders secured their place in the 2023 Caribbean Premier League (CPL) final on Sunday with a seven-wicket win over Guyana Amazon Warriors in Qualifier 1 on Wednesday night.
Trinbago Knight Riders won the toss and chose to bowl first. Led by Waqar Salamkheil and Terrence Hinds they produced a disciplined bowling performance to restrict Guyana Amazon Warriors to 166-7 after 20 overs, Despite another super innings from Saim Ayub, it was Guyana Amazon Warriors lowest score this season when batting first.
The Knight Riders chase was headlined by Chadwick Walton, with the opener ensuring his side never fell below the run rate and eventually guiding them across the finish line with a brilliant innings of 80 not out that ensured they progressed to the final on Sunday.
Ayub continued his brilliant maiden CPL season with a score of 49 as he once again opened with Odean Smith. Their 53-run partnership would prove to be the foundation of the Amazon Warriors innings. Despite losing leading run scorer Shai Hope in the ninth over, they would manage to reach 166-7 largely thanks to the late runs scored by Romario Shepherd and Gudakesh Motie.
Salamkheil and Hinds would both prove to be vital for the Knight Riders, as they took wickets and contained the scoring.
Trinbago Knight Riders raced away to 41-0 after 4 overs as Walton and Mark Deyal combined to give their side an ideal start to the chase.
Imran Tahir would bring himself on to bowl and strike with his first ball, trapping Deyal lbw. Nicholas Pooran replaced Deyal and together with Walton, forged a 51-run partnership before the former was caught off the bowling of Dwaine Pretorius for 33.
However, Walton would silence the Providence crowd with his innings of 80*, which included nine boundaries. He was supported by Captain Kieron Pollard as TKR surged towards victory and a place in Sunday’s final.
Kieron Pollard, Trinbago Knight Riders captain:
“(What made the difference) I think proper planning. Kudos to the backroom staff. The way we went about planning for Guyana, and to come out and execute like this. (Who led the way with the ball) I don’t want to single out anyone. When we played the last game against the Warriors, we gave guys an opportunity. The guys bowled as one and we must commend the bowling unit entirely. (Message before the run-chase) It was simple. If we batted well, we knew we would get there. They were 20-25 runs short. Walton coming in for Guptill, taking his chance, scoring 75 (80) and taking the chase through – that shows the confidence we have in him. (Thoughts on the final) I have not thought about it yet. For us, the next 24 hours is to bask in our glory and acknowledge what we have accomplished. After that, we will think about the final.”
Qualifier 2 between Guyana Amazon Warriors and Jamaica Tallawahs will take place on Friday evening at Providence Stadium.
Scores: Trinbago Knight Riders 167-3 (Walton 80*, Pooran 33; Pretorius 2-36, Tahir 1-30) beat Guyana Amazon Warriors 166-7 (Ayub 49, Khan 36; Salamkheil 2-28, Hinds 2-32) by seven wickets