The Cool and Smooth T20 got underway yesterday, with defending champions, the Liberta Blackhawks taking on Empire Nation in the curtain raiser before the Bethesda Golden Eagles and the Bolans Blasters got their tournament underway.
In the day’s first match, the Blackhawks named a strong side to start the competition, with West Indies Internationals Rakheem Cornwall and Hayden Walsh Jr. taking the field alongside Leeward Island Hurricane players Kofi James and Karima Gore. However, the Empire Nation got off to a strong start, with Mikyle Louis (24 off 19) and Tyrone Williams (37 off 27) bringing up an impressive 65-run opening stand. After Kadeem Phillip (2-13) took the opening wicket of the match, Louis being caught by Kofi James, the Blackhawks took the momentum picking up frequent wickets. West Indies leg spinner Hayden Walsh Jr. bowled an economical spell, only conceding 15 off his four overs, with off-spinner Kofi James finishing with 2-13 off his three overs.
The impressive bowling efforts of the Blackhawks restricted the Empire Nation to 123-6 from their 20 overs. After losing the opening batters early in the reply, James (7 off 13) and Avier Christian (1 off 4), the match looked wide open. The experience proved vital for the Blackhawks, with a combination of international and regional players helping to steady their innings and eventually taking them to the tournament’s first points. Gore (26 off 21) and Cornwall (29 off 19) made contributions with the bat as overseas Dexter Sween (17* off 24) and Joshua Thomas (20* off 23) completed the chase for the Blackhawks with an unbeaten 39-run partnership to lead the Blackhawks to a four-wicket win.
In the day’s second match, Bolans Blasters Taiem Tonge led from the front after being involved in six of the first innings wickets against the Bethesda Golden Eagles. Tonge opened the bowling for the Blasters, taking the early wicket of Jamaul Fernandez (2 off 8) before returning to take two more wickets finishing with the impressive figures of 3-17 off 3.5 overs. Tonge also completed two catches and a run out to ensure he was involved in over half the wickets. Zidane Clarke also impressed with the ball for the Blasters finishing with figures of 1-14 off his four overs, while Gavin Tonge top scored for the Golden Eagles with 27 off 19. The bowling efforts of the Blasters restricted the Golden Eagles to 113 all out.
Scotland captain Richie Berrington then showed why he is one of the most exciting batters on his day. Berrington opened the batting for the Blasters and carried his bat, scoring an unbeaten 66 off 49 balls during an inning that consisted of eight boundaries and two sixes. The Blasters didn’t have it all their way, with West Indian international Sheldon Cotrell bowling a firey impressive opening spell and finishing with figures of 0-10 off his three overs. However, the Blasters completed their first win through Berrington and Orlando Peters (27* off 24).
Day one of the Cool and Smooth T20 was full of incredible action, and we have just started. Today sees the Jennings Tigers face off against New Winthorpes Lions in what promises to be another enthralling encounter.
Please see below Match Schedule