Guyana Amazon Warriors will have their first of four crucial home matches beginning with the Jamaica Tallawahs this evening at the National Stadium, Providence.
Defending champions Tallawahs have been one of the in-form teams along with the Trinbago Knight Riders, who currently have they most points in the competition, with St. Kitts and Nevis Patriots trailing in second.
However, today’s match is expected to be interesting for the Warriors, who over the years have campaigned at a 70 per cent win rate at home and have won two out of three completed home matches against the Tallawahs.
At a pre-match briefing captain Martin Guptill spoke of the need for the warriors to adapt to the conditions. “It is always tough batting in Guyana; the wicket is a bit more slow than many other places. It is about the team that adapts the quickest to what’s thrown at them. The boys have had two really good days of training so we are looking forward to tomorrow [today]”.
On Tuesday Head curator of the pitches at the National Stadium, Providence, Wasim Habib said he expects the pitch to produce scores in the vicinity of 150 to 160 which Guptill thinks will be competitive.
“150-160 is a good total and but at the end of the day you have to go out and try your best. We are looking to continue from our good start in St Lucia and carry it on” he contended.
Moreover, addressing the mood of Warriors going into their first home battle, Guptill said “I don’t need to tell them anything to cheer them up, they are excited to play in front of the Guyanese home crowd. what more can you ask for much better than that. we are looking forward to getting out there and doing well”.
With just one win from four matches, the team knows the importance of registering four wins to secure a play-off spot.
The trump card for the team should be the leg spinner Rashid Khan who had a tight spell of 2 for 9 against St Lucia Stars.
“From facing him [Rashid Khan] it will not be easy for the other batsmen. He has bowled well the whole tournament and the other night in St Lucia he got the rewards” said the Warriors’ Captain.
Though the middle and lower-order has been somewhat feeble, promising signs have been shown from Jason Mohammed and Gajanand Singh along with some lower order hitting from Keemo Paul and Roshon Primus.
It is for this reason the captain said that they will stick with the players, showing the necessary support.
Meanwhile, Tallawahs enter this encounter after a composed fifty from Andre McCarthy which guided them to a five wicket victory, chasing 174 against St Lucia Stars on Tuesday.
McCarthy was present at the crease from the seventh over onwards and marshalled a steep run-chase with busy running and boundaries all around the ground despite wickets falling regularly.
Head Coach of Jamaica Tallawahs Paul Nixon said his team is full of confidence. Nixon praised the effort of the former West Indies under-19 player, who has shown maturity in his second half century knock of the League in just four matches, which are also his only two scores over fifty plus in his T20 career.
The coach noted that his unit is improving along the way because of the commitment shown behind the cameras.
Guyana Amazon Warriors: Martin Guptill (captain) , Rayad Emrit, Sohail Tanveer , Chadwick Walton, Assad Fudadin, Steven Jacobs, Jason Mohammed, Veerasammy Permaul, Babar Azam, Steven Katwaroo, Steven Taylor, Keon Joseph, , Rashid Khan, Keemo Paul, Ali Khan, Roshon Primus, Gajanand Singh
Jamaica Tallawahs: Kumar Sangakkara (c & wk), Mohammad Sami, Lendl Simmons, Glen Phillips, Jonathan Foo, Krishmar Santokie, Garey Mathurin, Kennar Lewis, Imad Wasim, Glenn Phillips, Odean Smith, Trevon Griffith , Andre McCarthy, Kesrick Williams, Jon-Russ Jaggesar, Rovman Powell.
Match time is 18:00 hrs and the gates will open from 15:45 hrs. (Akeem Greene)