North Sound, Antigua – Kevon Cooper was “superman” for Trinidad and Tobago on Friday night as he bowled the defending champions to a massive seven-wicket victory over arch rivals Guyana on the fifth day of the WICB’s Caribbean T20.
Playing before a colourful crowd of over 8,500 at the Sir Vivian Richards Cricket Ground, the medium-fast bowler took the “big” wicket of Shiv Chanderpaul – caught in the deep without scoring from a clever slower ball. Cooper also sent back left-handed opener Sewnarine Chattergoon and the dangerous Royston Crandon to end with career-best 3-26 off four overs to win the Star-of-the-Match award.
Guyana eventually reached 101-9 off their 20 overs and the Trinis then easily reached the target with just three wickets down and 17 balls to spare. T&T’s record is now two wins and one defeat and moved them closer to a semi-final spot. Guyana, the 2010 tournament winners, have one win and one defeat from two matches.
“Shiv was the big wicket. We knew he was the one man in the Guyana team who could play a match-winning innings so we had to get him early. I got him and I also got Chatters (Chattergoon), the two most experienced batsmen in the Guyana team. From that stage you could see we had them on the backfoot,” said the 22-year-old Cooper.
“I was quite surprised when the captain called me on to bowl, as I normally don’t bowl that early. But I was confident. I had the full support of the entire team and I knew once I got my slower ball and my other variations spot on, on that pitch which was helpful to my kind of bowling, I could do the job.”
Cooper, who is also a capable lower-order batsman, said it was great to play in front a large and vocal crowd and was full of praise for the fans.
“It’s a great feeling when you put on the T&T jersey and come out to play in front such a large and supportive crowd. The team felt a lift when we went out. You could feel the energy. It felt great to perform for the fans.”