One Million Dollar Guyana!
Narsingh Deonarine smashed the penultimate ball of the match for a huge six over midwicket to give Guyana the title in the inaugural Stanford 20/20 Cricket Tournament.
With six needed off two balls, to win the US$1 million top prize, Deonarine, the small but powerful left-hander went down on one knees and carted the full length ball from leg spinner Samuel Badree over the fence.
It took the Guyanese to 176 for five from 19.2 overs in reply to a challenging 175 for six off 20 overs made by Trinidad and Tobago. Deonarine faced just two balls to be seven not out and with him at the end was skipper Ramnaresh Sarwan on 49 not out, off 40 balls.
For the amazing shot, which disappeared into the delirious crowd, Deonarine won the US$25 000 Play-of-the-Match award.
“This was great, I’m so delighted,” said Deonarine in the post-match celebrations.
The stage was set by opener Travis Dowlin, who hit 80 off 60 balls, before he was forced to retire hurt with back spasms and cramps with the score at 132 for 2 in the 17th overs.
Dowlin hit 11 fours and a six to guide the innings. He added 109 with Sarwan, before he had to leave in pain. The knock kept his side in pace with the target, as the asking rate never went above 12 per over. For his heroics he received the Man-of-the-Match award of US$100 000.
“I did it for the team and I am quite happy,” said Dowlin as he raised his hands to the cheering fans. “We are all happy and I’m especially happy with playing a key role.”
He benefited from three chances at 52, 66 and 79. His removal, due to the back spasm, brought new life to Trinidad and Tobago, as they sensed a chance to get back into the match, Imran Khan smashed a six in 10 runs, Mahendra Nagamootoo hit two fours in eight, and Neil McGarrell went for a duck, as Sarwan was unable to get on strike.
This brought the match into the final over by Badree with 14 needed. The first ball saw McGarrell’s demise, the second Deonarine got a single and then Sarwan smashed the next over long-on for a towering six. He chipped a single from the next, and then Deonarine delivered in style.
Earlier, it required a stunning 38 not out off just 14 balls from Denesh Ramdin to give Trinidad and Tobago a fighting score. They were struggling at 122 for five in the 17th over, but got 53 in the final three as Ramdin hit four fours and two sixes. Skipper Daren Ganga hit 47 from 34 balls, while opener William Perkins hit 32 from 31 balls. The top bowler was pacer Esuan Crandon, who took two for 25 from four clever overs.
After the match the Guyanese received their bounty and each member of the team got a gold ring with 19 diamonds to commemorate the thrilling victory.