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Empire beat UWI on last ball


WAYNE HOLDER 

Empire beat UWI on last ball

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DRAMA of the most thrilling kind unfolded as Empire eked out a victory by five wickets off the last ball of their Barbados Cricket Association Sagicor General T20 semi-final against Sagicor UWI yesterday.

With one ball left in the final over, UWI pacer Chemar Holder delivered a yorker to experienced all-rounder Ryan Hinds, who dug it out and set off for what would have been the winning run. However, Akeem Dewar ran in from short mid-on, swooped on the ball and broke the stumps at the non-striker’s end with Hinds short of his ground.

The visitors’ exultation in the belief that they had salvaged a tie that would have forced a Super Over, was brought to an immediate halt as umpires Ryan Willoughby and Dave Thompson indicated that “dead ball” had been called, thereby nullifying the ball, which had to be redelivered.

Hinds and partner Andre Roach gathered a leg bye for the “Blues” to reach 133 for nine to scrape home and deny the 2017 champions a second successive hold on the title. Last year’s competition was brought to a premature conclusion due to protests from clubs at the semi-final stage.

Empire won the toss, elected to field and restricted UWI to 132 for seven.

UWI skipper Nicholas Kirton and West Indies all-rounder Rovman Powell featured in a 63-run third-wicket partnership that gave the “Blackbirds” hopes of accumulating a big total before both batsmen fell within six runs and seven balls of each other for 36 and 38, respectively.

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