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The South Australia Redbacks wrapped up their Champions League Twenty20 (CLT20) group stage matches with their fourth victory on the trot, beating bottom of the table Guyana by 15 runs at the Wanderers Stadium on Tuesday.Â The Redbacks have finished top of Group B and will play their semi-final at Centurion. With their place in the semis already confirmed, South Australia were playing to keep their winning momentum going, whileÂ Guyana were trying to salvage some pride before catching an early flight home.
Guyana won the toss and decided to field first, a tactic which has worked well for them back home.Â South Australia had a rare rocky start to their innings. They lost both their openers within five overs and were reduced to 41-3, when the number three batsman, Graham Manou was dismissed in the sixth over. Opener Daniel Harris was cleaned up by Paul Wintz in the second over. Pitched short and outside offstump, Harris tried to play a shot off the backfoot and but ended up chopping the ball onto his stumps instead. In-form captain Michael Klinger was beaten by a well disguised slow cutter from Christopher Barnwell in the fifth over. He came onto the front foot a little too early and couldn't retract his shot, giving a simple catch to the midwicket fielder. Wintz struck again in the very next over, with a peach of a delivery to dismiss Graham Manou. Manou was too late to bring his bat down as he was cleaned up by a full length delivery.
With the score at 41-3, Cameron Borgas joined Callum Ferguson in the middle, to try and get their team back into the game. The pair played with great confidence and put on 88 runs in the next ten overs, taking the score to 125 for 3 in 15 overs. They showed great composure and were looking like they could consolidate and take the team to a big total. Off spinner Fudadin, playing his first match of the tournament, ruined their plans in the very next over as he cleaned up Borgas with an Afridi-esque delivery that travelled at a staggering pace of 121 kmph. Guyana tried to pull things back but Ferguson continued the onslaught and put on a 35-run partnership off the next 3 overs with Daniel Christian before the latter mistimed his slog sweep and was caught at deep midwicket. He played a brief innings of 23 off just 10 balls and took the score to 170 for 4 in 18.4 overs. Next batsman Aaron O'Brien then finished the innings in style by hitting Fudadin for 15 runs in the last over of the innings.
Chasing a total of 191, Guyana's batsmen played well to take their team as close as 15 runs to the target. For a team that has been struggling with form, scoring 175 against the best team in their league will give them a little satisfaction.
Guyana's batting was rocked early as opener Travis Dowlon continued to have a torrid time in the middle, trapped leg before by a full length inswinging delivery by series debutant Jake Haberfield. Youngster Richard Ramdeen, also playing his first game, joined captain Ramnaresh Sarwan in the middle to resurrect their innings. They began to play a few strokes and put together a useful partnership of 42 runs off the next 5 overs. Ramdeen hit 5 boundaries and a 6 in his innings of 35 from 22 balls before falling to Chrisitian, caught attempting to clear the in-field.
Steven Jacobs then joined his captain and he too shared in a good partnership with Sarawn, as the pair added 56 off the next 5 overs and put Guyana back into the game. After an explosive innings, Jacobs fell in the 13th over, as he went after a ball that was way outside the off stump, giving the deep third man fielder an easy catch. He scored a quickfire 32 off just 19 deliveries and took the team's total to 107 for 3 in 12.4 overs. Even as Sarwan didn't lose hope, sadly for him the rest of the batsmen failed to support him. Guyana lost three wickets in quick successions and were struggling at 136 for 5 in 16 overs requiring 56 runs off the last four overs. Sarwan and Derwin Christian scored 14 runs off the 17th over, but Harris removed Christian on the first ball of the next over with Guyana still needing 42 off 17 deliveries for an unlikely win. Two balls later, the prospects of a possible upset vanished as Sarwan was caught at long-on for a well made 70 off 46 balls. The tail couldn't do much and Guyana finished with 175 for 7, falling short by just 15 runs.
It could have been very different for Guyana, but someÂ poor bowling allowed the Redbacks to add 109 runs in their last 10 overs. Despite that,Â Guyana were always in contact with the required run rate and had it not been for the lack of a quality batsman lower down the order, they could have pulled off a morale boosting win.
South Australia 191/6 (20 overs, 9.55rpo)
Ferguson 55 (37) Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Wintz 2-11
Borgas 48 (36) Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Bishoo 2-29
Guyana 176/7 (20 overs, 8.8rpo)
Sarwan 70 (46) Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Harris 3-33
Ramdeen 35 (22) Â Â Â Â Â Â Christian 2-20
File Photograph Copyright: Michael Henn
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