Paul, bowlers guide Warriors to opening win over Zouks

Guyana Amazon Warriors 155 for 9 (Paul 38, Green 28*, McCoy 4-41, Ahmed 2-25) beat St Lucia Zouks 142-9 ( Cornwall 36, Khan 3-16, Green 2-28, Shepherd 2-18) by 13 runs

By Royston Alkins 

A late order flurry from Keemo Paul with the bat, backed up by tidy bowling spells from the Guyana Amazon Warriors’ bowlers, delivered a 13 run win for the host over the St Lucia Zouks in their opening bout in this year’s CPL 2019 at Providence Thursday evening. 

Warriors after being sent in, stuttered at 85-5 following the demise of their big guys Shimron Hetmyer (24), Shoaib Malik (28), Nicholas Pooran (0), and Sherfane Rutherford (10). 

Nonetheless, the host recovered well to post 155-9, on the back of a flamboyant innings of 38 from hometown boy Keemo Paul who blasted three fours and the identical number of sixes to give his side a respectable total. Paul shared in a 48-run stand with Chris Green (28*) who threw his willow with good effect. 

Left-arm seamer Obed McCoy who delivered timely breakthroughs for the visitors, ended as the chief wicket-taker, grabbing 4-41 to register an impressive outing. He was supported by leg spinner Fawad Ahmed (2-25).  

Zouks in response, got off to a flying start, smacking 15 off Paul’s first over to give their side the ideal start. They lost Andre Fletcher (8) soon after but that didn’t blunt the burly figure of Rahkeem Cornwall – his opening partner – from belting the bowlers around as Zouks raced to 44 – 1 after the fifth over. 

The game, seemingly poised for an exciting finish, progressed with plenty nail-biting action as Najibullah Zadran (23) produced a purposeful knock to slant the game Zouks way. They reached 84 for four at the halfway point. The equation stood at 72 runs from 60 balls. Cornwall who did his job at the top of the order, fell for a 14 ball 36 in the midst of the excitement. 

Cornwall’s efforts, though, were in vain as Warrior’s bowlers held their nerve in front of a near packed crowd to restrict Zouks to 142-9 from their 20 overs. Darren Sammy (18) played a threatening knock at the bottom but in the end, the efforts of Shadab Khan (3-16), Chris Green (2-28) and Romario Shepherd (2-18) fared off the visitor’s efforts to secure Guyana’s opening win. 

Upcoming Fixtures: Friday 6 September – Trinbago Knight Riders v Jamaica Tallawahs (8pm), Queen’s Park Oval; Saturday 7 September – Guyana Amazon Warriors v St Kitts & Nevis Patriots (8pm)