2019 ICC Americas T20 Region Final: Canada v USA Game 1 – Frustrated Bear v Wounded Bear?

Toronto (21 August 2019): Today’s (Wednesday’s) first meeting of two between Canada and the USA in the 2019 ICC Americas T20 Region Final in Bermuda might be described as a meeting between the frustrated bear – Canada – and the wounded bear – USA. On Monday Canada was left frustrated with just one point from a no result against Bermuda when well set for a Duckworth Lewis system win if there had been a fifth over. But there was no fifth over, so the game ended as a no result.
Meanwhile, the USA suffered the wound of losing by 6 runs to Bermuda in the opening round on Sunday but beat the Cayman Islands later in Monday’s round of matches after the Canada- Bermuda game had fizzled out due to rain. Cayman Islands struggled to 68/8 after 20 overs then rain brought an end after USA had reached 60/5 from 15 overs. But the USA innings had lasted more than 5 overs, so the USA won by 10 runs under the D/L system.
Going into Wednesday’s matches, Canada and Bermuda each has 3 points (1 win, 1 no result), USA has 2 points (1 win, 1 loss) and Cayman Islands trails with no points (2 losses).
Bermuda and the Cayman Islands meet in today’s first game, then comes the meeting between Canada and the USA.
Canada beat the USA in an eliminator over after the game was tied but the USA won the second game in a four team ICC Americas Sub-Regional T20 Qualifier last year. A Canadian lower- order batting recovery lead by Rizwan Cheema saw Canada match the USA’s 140/8 from 20 overs. Steve Taylor’s powerful 96* lead USA to a 2 wicket victory in the second game between the North American rivals. USA and Canada each ended with 5 wins and 1 loss. The other teams in this tournament, played in Morrisville, North Carolina were Panama and Belize who each recorded 1 win and 5 defeats. Panama placed higher in the standings on net run rate.
Canada beat the USA in the last round-robin series of the 50-over World Cricket League Division 2 (50 over matches) in April 2019 but the USA’s last wicket pair hung on to take USA’s score past 211 in the 50th over. Canada had needed to keep the USA below 211 in that game in order to finish above Papua New Guinea in the round-robin standings on net run rate. So a win for Canada but frustration at placing fifth in the round-robin phase which has resulted in Canada dropping into the new ICC Challenge League.
Papua New Guinea retained a place in the new World Cricket League 2 and is currently playing in Scotland, hosts of the opening ODI tri-series of League 2. Oman is the other country involved in this tri-series.
On the day the Canadian squad was named for this ICC Americas T20 Region Final, left-arm spinner Saad Bin Zafar came good with 4 for 22 as Vancouver Knights inflicted a first defeat on the new Brampton Wolves franchise in the second GT20 Canada.
Bermuda v Cayman Islands Background
Bermuda and Cayman Islands topped a three team Americas qualifying group that included Argentina last year to reach this Regional Final. Bermuda took first place due to a better Net Run Rate (NRR) after each won one and lost one in the two head-to-head games in Buenos Aires. Kamau Leverock, who has gained playing experience with Nottimghamshire Second XI after playing for Cardiff Memorial University in MCC University cricket, did well in last year’s Buenos Aires tournament.
Bermuda is strengthened for this ICC Americas T20 Region Final by the availability of all- rounder Delray Rawlins from Sussex. Rawlins has had some useful performances in T20 and first class cricket this year, especially with the bat lower down the order. Rawlins, a left-handed bat and slow-left arm orthodox bowler, and could make a big difference in the remainder of this tournament.
Veteran Raymon Sealy is missing from the Cayman Islands squad after doing well with the bat in the 2018 Buenos Aires T20 Americas Sub-Regional Qualifier.
Update: Result of Wednesday’s game: Cayman Islands 116/9 (20 overs) lost to Bermuda 117/4 (15.2 overs).
The sands of time have run out, so some other background notes about Canadian performances in the 2018 ICC Americas T20 Sub-Regional Qualifier, thru the 2019 ICC World Cricket League Division 2 in Namibia, the second GT20 Canada and the early games in this tournament have been washed away by the tide of time. Must be about time for this first of two scheduled games between Canada and the USA in this 2019 ICC Americas T20 Region Final.
Eddie Norfolk
Liver stream

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