by Rawle Toney
“It doesn’t really matter who we play in the finals because at the end of the day our goal as a team is to take that trophy back to Guyana” said Ramneresh Sarwan, Captain of the Guyana Amazon Warriors when he spoke exclusively to News Source at the Queens Park Oval in Trinidad and Tobago following their seven wicket win over the Red Steel to advance to the Limacol Caribbean Premier League (LCPL) T20 finals.
Sarwan won the toss and sent the home side in to bat first and having the best bowling line-up a captain can ask for, he was able to restrict Trinidad for 103 all-out. Guyana made light work of the chase, scoring 107 in 17 overs while losing only three wickets.
Asked if was easier than it looked, the Amazon Warriors Captain said “We simply did what was asked of us by the coaches (Courtney Ambrose & Roger Harper). For us we just wanted to execute our game plan which was to try to get them out for 120 and once we got them out for less we knew it was going to be an easy game”.
He added “tonight’s (Thursday) win means nothing for us, other than we are going to the finals. It’s nothing for us to lose sleep over and get too carried away, right now our focus has to be even more on Saturday and coming out victorious”.
After their comprehensive win over Trinidad, Guyana now awaits the winner of the second Semi-Final between Jamaica Tallawahs and Barbados Trident which will be played tonight.
But the 33 year-old Guyanese Captain believes that regardless of who they play on Saturday, losing is not an option.
“We see things a little different on this team as compared to how many might want to think” Sarwan said, full stating “regardless of who wins between the two we all shared one common goal before the start of this tournament and we also understand that each and every team left right now are more than capable of winning this tournament and we want it; it’s who want it the most”
Guyana was blessed with something the other teams only dreamed of having; an economical bowling attack.
Left arm ‘seamer’ Krishmar Santokie is the tournament’s leading wicket taker and Thursday’s figures of 2 – 20, pushed his total of wickets to 20, while left arm off spinner Sunil Narine is the number one bowler in the T20 and One Day International (ODI) formats, according to the International Cricket Council (ICC) World Rankings.
Sarwan also have in the firing squad of deadly bowlers the Sri Lankan duo of right arm fast bowler Lasith Malinga and right arm off spin Tillakaratne Dilshan along with left arm orthodox Veerasammy Permaul.
But as beautiful as it looks, according to Sarwan, “It can be a bit challenging in terms of where you want to use them but its great especially as captain to have three bowlers – Santokie, Malinga and Narine – that do different stuff and honestly playing against a team like that would be a nightmare as a batsman, but at the end of the day it’s all about how well they execute and how well they respond to having me put them to bowl under pressure and so far they have been able to do that”.
Meanwhile, Sarwan said that he was overwhelmed at how Guyanese support their side and added that while it’s known as a franchise more so than country, the people of Guyana sees it as national team and as such has whole heatedly supported the Warriors.
“The team is made up of people from all across the world and not just Caribbean but to Guyanese it’s ‘Guyana National Team’. We see the passion and support for us when we played at home, every game was sold out and some had even been travelling with us and encouraging us so we owe them this much. Those who can’t be here (in Trinidad) are glued to the TV I’m sure” Sarwan noted.
The Guyana Amazon Warriors franchise is own by pharmaceutical and Media mogul Bobby Ramroop.
The prize money for the total of the 21 preliminary matches adds up to a massive US$525,000 (US$25,000 per match) and the semi-finalists will battle it out in a winner take all final match with a winning purse worth US$250,000.
Along with the Man of the Match award of US$1,000 per match across the full 24 matches, and additional player awards the total prize pot for the LCPLT20 will exceed a whopping US$800,000.