CPL 2017: ‘Sanga’ blames errant bowlers for loss to TKR


Kumar Sangakkara, the Jamaica Tallawahs captain, says his team’s wayward bowling is to blame for the 36-run loss to Trinbago Knight Riders in the Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) Twenty20 (T20) game at Sabina Park in Kingston.

The Knight Riders amassed 208-6 off their allotted 20 overs on Saturday after the Tallawahs won the toss and asked them to take first strike.

Opener Brendon McCullum blasted 91 off 62 balls, while Colin Munro and Darren Bravo chipped in with quick-fire camoes of 42 and 28, respectively. Medium pacer Rovman Powell was best bowler for the Tallawahs with 2-38.

The Tallawahs were 87-1 inside the ninth over, but the tall asking rate meant the pressure to score boundaries was always on and, as wickets tumbled, they were eventually restricted to 172-7.

Sangakkara made 53 off 36 balls to keep hopes temporarily alive. Lendl Simmons made 32, while Powell contributed 30. Javon Searles grabbed 3-27 for the Knight Riders.

“Anything over 200 is tough. I think the key is that we bowled very, very poorly today. Maybe it’s the tired from playing games back to back [against St Lucia Stars and the Knight Riders], but we didn’t execute on the plans,” Sangakkara said in a post-game television interview.

“If we had kept them to under 190 that would have been [an easier score to chase]. There’s a lot to think about and talk about and to apply in the next game. We bowled too many of those length balls that you can hit; not enough variations as we saw the Trinbago Knight Riders do.

The Tallawahs have 10 points from eight games and are on the cusp of a play-off spot with two home games to come. The Knight Riders, already assured of a play-off place, are in an unassailable position in the preliminary stage with 16 points from nine outings.

Outside of that accomplishment, Knight Riders skipper Bravo was thrilled at beating the Tallawahs at their home base for the first time in CPL history.

“Coming to Jamaica is always tough and we challenged ourselves as a group because we have never beaten Jamaica in Jamaica. We got the jinx off our back tonight; it was a great team effort, and I say well played to McCallum and Munro because they laid the foundation.

“Chasing 200 is always going to be challenging; I’m very happy. This team is hungry for success…it’s very difficult to win T20 tournaments like this where all teams are very good, but we have to keep encouraging the guys and motivate them in different ways,” he explained.

McCallum, who took the man of the match award after his batting heroics, said the Tallawahs bowlers made them work hard toward the end of the innings.

“We had to work really hard…and at the time when you try to accelerate in an innings, I thought they bowled really well and took pace off the ball. We had to make sure we got that score which was above-par instead of chasing that sort of illustrious score of 230-240,” said the former New Zealand captain. (Jamaica Observer)


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