By Brandon Corlette
The Guyana Harpy Eagles will fly into the backyard of the Trinidad and Tobago Red Force when the teams do battle in the Regional Super50 semi-final. This cracking encounter should bowl off at 13:00h Eastern Caribbean time at the Brian Lara Cricket Academy.
Trinidad are unbeaten in the tournament, while the Guyanese reached the semi-final by a slim margin. There is no doubt that the confidence in the Trinidad camp is over the roof, while the Guyanese may have gotten some confidence after defeating a wounded Jamaica Scorpions.
Tagenarine Chanderpaul and Shimron Hetmyer scored half-centuries in the match against Jamaica, their first of the season. Guyana’s star batsman of the season Sherfane Rutherford, who is batting at number seven, has 248 runs, the fourth most by a batsman in the Caribbean this season.
Kevin Sinclair has 14 wickets, and he is fourth in the wicket-takers list this season. He will be aiming to extend his scalps but the Red Force batters have been up to the task.
Darren Bravo has led his team well to five wins, the only unbeaten side in the tournament. The experienced left-hander scored 323 runs thus far, five runs behind the tournament’s leading run-scorer, Justin Greaves (328).
Sunil Narine, who announced his retirement on Sunday, is the joint highest wicket-taker with Yannic Cariah on 16 wickets. The spin magician will certainly be a handful for some of the troubled Guyanese batsmen.
Like Narine, the Guyana side is equipped with their own spin magician, Gudakesh Motie, who bowled arguably the spell of the tournament when he claimed 5-17, the second best figures of the season by a Caribbean bowler.
Nicholas Pooran is fresh and ready to bring his ‘A’ game as is Shimron Hetmyer who is fresh from a fifty against Jamaica.
For some of these players, it will be revenge from the CPL 2023 final.
With all the big names listed for such a big contest, this match has the right ingredients for a blockbuster. The winner will sit and wait for the final on Saturday, November 11.
Barbados and Leeward Islands will meet tomorrow, Thursday November 9 in the second semi-final at the same venue.
Guyana Harpy Eagles: Veerasammy Permaul (captain), Tevin Imlach (vice-captain), Kelvon Anderson, Shamar Joseph, Tagenarine Chanderpaul, Chandrapaul Hemraj, Shimron Hetmyer, Gudakesh Motie, Sherfane Rutherford, Quentin Sampson, Kemol Savory, Richie Looknauth, Kevin Sinclair, Nial Smith; Ryan Hercules (Head Coach)
Trinidad & Tobago Red Force: Darren Bravo (captain), Joshua Da Silva (vice-captain), Yannic Cariah, Mark Deyal, Shannon Gabriel, Terrance Hinds, Akeal Hosein, Nicholas Pooran, Jason Mohammed, Sunil Narine, Kjorn Ottley, Khary Pierre, Jayden Seales, Tion Webster; David Furlonge (Head Coach)