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Sagicor T20 full of tension

Philip Hackett

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With controversy becoming virtually a norm in local cricket circles the final of the Sagicor T20 between Sagicor Life UWI and CGI Maple was not without its fair share of confusion.
By the time the evening had ended UWI had successfully defended their title but at one stage it appeared the students from Cave Hill were about to self-destruct and allow Maple to earn their second title of the season, having already been crowned champions of the Elite division.
The absence of West Indies pacer Kemar Roach in the field for most of UWI’s innings, reportedly with an injured shoulder, was crucial. The run-out of Maple batsman Jamar Griffith following a collision with bowler Carlos Brathwaite was unfortunate considering the fact that his teammate and captain Renaldo Parris had been earlier spared such a fate in similar circumstance through the umpire’s call of dead ball.
Even more bizarre though were the circumstances that almost caused the match to require a super over when a clear win for UWI should have been completed with two balls to spare.
Batsmen Stephen Jacobs and Akeem Dewar opted to celebrate with Dewar’s on drive heading out towards long on. When Don O’Neal completed the fielding Jacobs was short of his ground with the wicket broken at the striker’s end.
Amazingly it took several minutes of discussion between umpires Gregory Brathwaite and Jonathan Blades before Jacobs was given out and Maple captain Renaldo Parris told the media after the match that there was also an issue as to if the batsmen had even completed the first run. 
Parris also pointed out that O’Neal may have been impeded in his fielding attempt by excited members of the UWI team and supporters who gathered on the edge of the boundary. During the presentation ceremony that followed it was announced that Maple would be protesting the outcome.
UWI captain Kyle Corbin explained that being caught up in the moment contributed to the decision-making that created the mayhem but acknowledged it was the job of the umpires to sort it out and the end result was what they desired.
“The guys and myself in particular were excited because we thought it would have been two runs but the batsmen in the middle thought it was four, so they only completed one run. 
“In the end it ended up in the run-out of Jacobs so I guess it’s one of those things that happens in the game but at the end of the day we came out with the win and that is the most important thing,” Corbin told MIDWEEK SPORT immediately following the match.
“At the end of the day the batsmen thought it was one thing, the fielders thought it was another  thing and I guess the umpires were the ones to make the decision and that is what they did.”
The elated skipper agreed the match was closer than it appeared it would be but praised his players for successfully completing the task.
“I think it got a bit too close down to the end but we came off with a win and that was what we wanted to do so I ‘ll say well played to the guys today.
“We knew the wicket was assisting the bowlers. The wicket had a bit of grip in it. Once the spinners tried to spin the ball they would get some purchase and the fast bowler, once you use the pitch you would get a bit more bounce than before.
“We knew that it was going to be challenging even though we restricted them to a decent total. We knew that they have a good bowling attack so it was just for us to keep wickets until the end, maintain our focus and do what we do best, that is to finish games,” Corbin said.