By Brandon Corlette
Guyana Amazon Warriors (GAW) continued their record-breaking 2019 Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) season, stitching together eight wins in as many matches.
After their latest win against the defending champions, Trinbago Knight Riders (TKR), Warriors Captain Shoaib Malik was pleased with the consistency shown with the bat and ball.
“I am very pleased, and credit goes to the guys; they are consistent with the ball and bat. There was no message: the batsmen in the middle knew what they had to do and the opener Chandrapaul Hemraj scored 50-plus, which gave us the edge,” Malik highlighted.
The Pakistani superstar added that Hemraj has been hitting the ball cleanly in practice and he has been showing that in matches.
In the GAW v TKR match at Port of Spain, the conditions were tough for bowling. “I want to congratulate my bowlers; although the conditions were wet, they were brilliant,” Malik stated.
With two more matches in the preliminary rounds, Malik stated that the team must improve in the catching department.
The opening pair of Brandon King and Hemraj has been a big plus in this successful campaign thus far. King has 287 runs while Hemraj sits pretty with 257 runs in eight matches. Shimron Hetmyer, who missed out on a half-century against TKR, has taken his tally to 203 runs. Captain Malik remains on 180 runs. Arguably the best bowling line-up in the tournament, GAW’s highest wicket taker is Chris Green.
He has 12 wickets in eight matches at a stellar bowling average of 15.66 and a brilliant economy rate of 6.40 in an era where the bats are bigger. Veteran Imran Tahir has 10 wickets while Romario Shepherd is the leading pacer with nine wickets for GAW. Keemo Paul has eight wickets while Ben Laughlin, who had a slow start to the CPL, has six wickets in his four outings.
Meanwhile, Shepherd, who was the Man of the Match for his vital 13-ball 32 against TKR, reflected on a dream night with the bat: “When I was going out to bat, I was told to hit the ball as hard as I can and that’s what I did. I backed myself 100 per cent and it came off.”
Shepherd, who has been on the rise as a fast bowler, continued to show great promise with the ball, with nine wickets, the most by a GAW seamer.
Reminiscing on his bowling effort against TKR on Monday, Shepherd disclosed that it was tough with the dew and the ball was wet from the inception. “We knew what we had to do on this ground, to keep the ball dry as long as possible and stick to the plans. We have two more games left and our plan is just to win those,” Shepherd disclosed.
The GAW will continue their CPL on Thursday, October 3 against Jamaica Tallawahs at the Guyana National Stadium from 18:00h local time. On the following day at the same venue, it will be the clash of the CPL giants, when GAW host TKR from 20:00h.