Charles, Gayle power Atlanta Paramveers to US Open title
Johnson Charles stroked a well-composed 70 and Chris Gayle made 49 and claimed one wicket to lead the Atlanta Paramveers to a 10-run win against the 22 Yards Sultans in the grand final of the USA Open T20 tournament in Florida.
Chasing 183 to win, a Guyanese-filled 22 Yards team ended on the losing side, falling short on 172-7 when 20 overs had expired.
Earlier, 22 Yards won the toss and opted to bowl first. Atlanta Paramveers lost Darpan Patel for two when he was cleaned up by Guyana’s Ashmead Nedd at 2-1. Gayle, batting at number three, joined his long-time West Indies partner Charles and the duo showed experience, adding 107 runs for the second- wicket partnership.
Gayle, who made a match-winning half-century in the semi-final, fell one run short of another fifty. The big Jamaican faced 36 balls and scored 49, which was decorated with three sixes and four boundaries. It was Christopher Barnwell who got the big fish when Trevon Griffith took a stunning catch at 109-2 in 13.3 overs.
Fresh from a man-of-the-match effort in the semi-final, Sherfane Rutherford proved himself with the ball in hand this time around. He removed Steven Taylor (01) and Param Patel (03). The St Lucian Charles hit sweet sixes and rode his luck after he was dropped by Griffith on 52 off the bowling of Barnwell.
However, Charles was undone by the brilliance of Devendra Bishoo in the field, off the bowling of Rutherford. Charles’ innings of 70 came off 50 balls and included nine fours and one six. The South African Wayne Parnell finished off the innings for Parmaveers, striking 27 from 12 balls to ensure the Atlanta-based team reach 182-6 in their allotted 20 overs.
Garth Garvey (17) and Parnell took a liking to Barnwell, hitting 23 runs off his final over. Rutherford had figures of 3-24 while Nedd (1-18, three overs), Jasdeep Singh (1-47) and Barnwell (1-49) had one wicket each.
Griffith and Ahad Malek added 64 runs for the first wicket in 7.1 overs to set an early tone. Malek was bowled by Gayle, the first ball into his spell. Griffith continued to play his shots, but he played one too many and was caught by Charles off the bowling of Parnell. The left-hander hit two fours and two sixes.
With no run for the taking, Rutherford took off and the bowler hit the stumps and he was run out for 11 at 111-3 in 12.5 overs. Barnwell played well for his 20-ball 35, but that proved insufficient in the end, when he was run out. 22 Yards required 20 runs in the final over with Sinclair and Barnwell in the middle. It was Evroy Dyer with ball in hand; Barnwell and Sinclair had a big miscommunication and that led to an angry Barnwell’s dismissal. Bowling for the Atlanta team, Parnell had 2-27 in his four overs.